Family News From China

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by GatorGrowl, Mar 16, 2014.

  1. vertigo0923
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    vertigo0923 night owl mod VIP Member

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    these are great photos! what a precious kid! i bet you can't wait til they get home.
  2. Mika
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    Thanks for allowing us to read a part of your life. :)
  3. GatorGrowl
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    GatorGrowl Forum Admin Staff Member GC Staff VIP Member

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    A short video of Grace learning a little English
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  4. GatorGrowl
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    To appreciate a little of Scott and Traci here is a video from a couple years back-

  5. GatorGrowl
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    GatorGrowl Forum Admin Staff Member GC Staff VIP Member

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    When the process started Scott and Traci decided to have a yard sale to raise money. The church hosted it in the gym and the goal was to raise $1000. The church folks started dropping items off........ 15k was raised in two days.....

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  6. GatorGrowl
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    GatorGrowl Forum Admin Staff Member GC Staff VIP Member

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    But back on the serious side....
    JONES---- Mrs. Ethel M. Bell Jones of Jacksonville, Florida passed away on March 21, 2014.

    She was born in Edison, Georgia to John and Lillian Bell on August 20, 1921. Ethel was a devoted wife to Robert S.(Buck) Jones for 67 years. She was predeceased in death by her husband and a son, John Ronald Jones.

    She is survived by two daughters and their husbands, Annice Jones-Magann(Sonny), Donna Faith Jones Shepherd(David), both of Jacksonville, Florida and a son and his wife, Robert E. (Bob) Jones(Jan) of Covington, Georgia.

    She is survived by 12 grandchildren: Terri Bass-Lombardi(Terry), Shad Magann, Sean Magann(Randy), Mandi Magann-Dellilo (Darin), Scott Shepherd (Traci), Joshua Shepherd (Tricia), Missey Stehlin (Rob), John R. Jones (Jessica), Robert E.(Chip) Jones, Jr. (Katie), Traci Jones Burgess, Leann Jones Thompson (Shane), Steven Tyler Jones (Missey).

    She is survived by 18 great grandchildren and several nieces
    and nephews.

    A graveside service will be held on Wednesday, March 26, 2014, at 2:00PM, at Jacksonville Memory Gardens, 111 Blanding Blvd., Orange Park, Florida, 32073. Visitation will be from 12:00Noon to 2:00PM in the Jacksonville Gardens Funeral Home at this same location prior to the graveside service.

    The Family has much appreciation for the Community Hospice of Northeast
    Florida, Jacksonville, for their gentle and loving care of Mom!

    In lieu of flowers, those desiring may send a contribution to the Community
    Hospice of Northeast Florida, 4266 Sunbeam Road, Jacksonville, Florida,
    32257 or to the Jamestown Baptist Church, 3800 ABC Avenue, Waycross,
    Georgia 31503.
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  7. chemgator
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    We had a great time at the zoo also, but our 19-month old was only interested in the animals that were taking a bath (there was a bear in the water that she really liked). That, and she was interested in the map at the entrance, not because she liked maps, but because there were loose nuts and bolts holding it together, which she proceeded to take apart.

    I hope they get a chance to take the Pearl River Dinner Cruise at night. That is a truly amazing event. It's a whole new way to see Guangzhou, with all the lighted building displays, neon boats and bridges, etc. And they have jugglers and other entertainers on board, along with a buffet-style Chinese dinner!
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  8. GatorGrowl
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    United States Consulate Visit and Dinner Cruise
    by cscottshepherd on March 25, 2014
    This morning we finished our final procedure before leaving China. We visited the US Consulate to get Grace’s visa/approval for her to enter the US. She was approved! We can go home soon!

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    In the hotel lobby before we left for the appointment

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    United States Consulate

    After our consulate visit Traci and Grace were worn out. They decided to take a nap, but I (Dad) braved the city. I had decided to finish up some “souvenir” shopping for the kids, so I took a cab to a toys and gifts wholesale market.

    I’ll do my best to describe it for you. You know how almost every toy in the US says, “Made in China”? Well, this place had every single toy! This was no Toys ‘R Us. In fact, you could probably fit twenty American toy stores in this building. It was a seven-story mall with nothing but toys! It was crazy!

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    Front door of seven-story toy mall

    Gideon had heard from Cavan Daniels about a toy he got from his parents when they were in China, so Gideon had to have one, too! Let’s just say that Daddy had a successful trip! I even found something for Jordan and Iris.

    We had been looking forward to a dinner cruise we saw on our itinerary back when it was first mailed to us. When we saw the boat, we became somewhat less excited! Hehe
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    Dinner cruise boat

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    Be careful!

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    Dinner cruise buffet shrimp

    Above are some of our cute friends from the dinner cruise buffet.
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    Guangzhou’s skyline

    The skyline was, however, quite lovely.

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    Mom and Grace on dinner cruise. The crowd of people on the boat made Grace a little nervous, we think.

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    Grace enjoying some corn from the buffet

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    She thinks it was finger-lickin’ good

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    A juggler performs on the cruise

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    We didn’t notice the cruise’s food safety rating until we were on the way out. ;-)

    All in all, it was another great day in Guangzhou. Grace is very attached to mom, and she really enjoys playing with me, too! Our time together as a family (1/2 the Shepherd family) has be wonderful!

    Going to sleep for nap and at bedtime are the only times she reverts a bit to her sadness. She doesn’t scream or throw fits, but she does cry herself to sleep sometimes. We can tell that even though she loves her new life with Traci and me, it is still hard for her to be away from what was home for her for the last 2 and 1/2 years.

    We, of course, can’t blame her. Her feelings are VERY natural. She had one mother for a month who abandoned her; she lived in an orphanage for two years; she had a foster mom for 2 and 1/2 years; and now she has to adjust to the Shepherd family. That’s just about too much to handle in a lifetime, much less four and 1/2 years.

    What we wish we could tell her is that we are her FOREVER family. She will never again have to adjust. We pray that through our love for her–in the days, months, and years to come–she will come to know and trust us COMPLETELY. Most importantly, we pray that we can show her the “breadth and length and height and depth” of Christ’s love for her so she will trust Him completely.
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  9. HallGator
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    This makes all things worthwhile.
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  10. g8orbill
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    g8orbill Gators VIP Member

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    May God continue to bless your family and little Grace
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  11. DaveFla
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    DaveFla Well-Known Member

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    You DO know that we are going to require these twice-daily updates until Grace is at least 18 years old, and headed to UF.
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  12. JBufgogators
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    Wow Growl! Grace can't get any cute than this, adorableness.
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  13. Gatorrick22
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    Gatorrick22 Well-Known Member

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    I have to admit, GatorGrowl, that this was one of the best true stories I've read and seen played out before my eyes... It was just too heart warming to read.

    Thank you for posting it here for us all to read. I truly liked it and thoroughly enjoyed ever single post.
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  14. GatorGrowl
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    GatorGrowl Forum Admin Staff Member GC Staff VIP Member

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    See the 9:00 Group

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  15. GatorGrowl
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    Tomorrow we will have the funeral services for Donna's mom- the following day the family returns from China. As I have stated before, this has really been such an emotional time for us, especially my wife, who is so elated with these stories of Grace, but still will have to lay her mom to rest.

    Our youngest son will be conducting the service. His name is Joshua and he is 29. He is a missionary in Kansas City, KS.

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  16. Gatorrick22
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    GOD bless and my condolences sent once again...
  17. GatorGrowl
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    GatorGrowl Forum Admin Staff Member GC Staff VIP Member

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    On our way HOME!
    by cscottshepherd on March 26, 2014
    We are so HAPPY to report that we will be heading for home tomorrow! We have 30 HOURS of flights and layovers so your prayers are appreciated for smooth travels. Our sweet little Grace has been a little under the weather today but has stayed in good spirits (mostly) overall! We cannot believe that our time in China is coming to a close!

    Today was spent organizing and packing while we waited for some paperwork to be brought to our hotel. Among the documents we received was her Hague Adoption Certificate. What a beautiful sight for this Mama to lay eyes on!

    We ate lunch at Shamian Island and snapped a few pictures to document our last day in Guangzhou.



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    Grace got the giggles at statues again!



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    Ewwww…..

    We tried to pretend that we were just taking a picture of…you know….the scenery, instead of the GIANT red bird on a food platter poster. haha





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    Diva in Training



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    Like Mommy wears them :)



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    How a four year old wears sunglasses



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    Grace had a better idea!



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    They fit the statue!



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    This woman had too many carbs while in China….like Mama! :)



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    Found another statue to try the sunglasses on



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    Hand in hand with Daddy
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  18. HallGator
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    Great news!
  19. chemgator
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    chemgator Well-Known Member

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    I hope someone meets the family at the airport and drives them home. I can't imagine how exhausted they'll be after 30 hours and 13 time zones. Our return flights included 18 hours in the air and 5 hours in airports. I was lucky enough that my frequent flyer status got us free upgrades to Economy Plus (+3" of legroom, and one section ahead of the screaming baby section). We were also lucky to be returning through Detroit. The airports in the center of the country don't see as many adoptions as the ones on the coast, so the line is shorter in Immigration (the second line, that is). The only thing that wore us out is the hotel at the Hong Kong Airport did not have suites like the Garden Hotel in Guangzhou, so baby stirred and stared at us all night (two feet from the bed), and we couldn't sleep either.
  20. DaveFla
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    Marriott Sky City? Best concierge (executive) lounge of ANY Marriott property.

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