Sunday, January 10, 2010

Sunday Snapshot ~ Grace Lanli

Ni Hao Y'all

Stefanie at Ni Hao Y'all started 'Sunday Snapshot' and I wanted to participate this week.


My second child, the daughter I'd hoped, dreamed and prayed for many years.

Grace and her brother Nick are 17 years apart. In hindsight waiting 17 years for this little girl made perfect sense, because Grace is the daughter
we were always supposed to have.

Her name fits her perfectly.

We first met in the Gloria Plaza Hotel in the city of Nan Chang in Jiangxi Province, China. It was the last day of August in 2003, and she was 12 months old. She came into my arms easily and gave me a sweet little smile... it was one of the happiest moments of my life and I already loved this angel.
We had a first year of great transition, she was sick with chronic ear infections and reactive airway disease, and had many sleep issues. Right around her second birthday that all stopped. A few months later she was diagnosed with a profound speech delay. A profound delay means no speech, none. She made very few sounds. I remember being concerned but also knowing somehow my strong willed, smart little girl would overcome it. Grace started speech at age 2 and now 5.5 years later, you would never know that at one time that was an issue. Grace has worked extremely hard in therapy with her language and speech issues.

I've mentioned many times on my blog that I've never met such a joyful and happy child, she has a ready smile and infectious laugh. She has a true 'joie de vivre' or joy of living and expresses it easily and often. Grace is a kind, gentle person and a natural nurturer...and I believe someday she'll make a wonderful mother. She has a love of learning and school and asks to go even on the weekends! I would describe her as soft spoken and a little shy in new situations but once she knows someone she'll talk their ear off. (hmm...sounds very much like her mother). Our girl is artistic and draws or paints every single day. But if I picked one word to describe Grace it would be 'survivor.' Because even with all these gentle traits she has, she is also fiesty at times, has a will of iron, and enormous strength underneath it all which will serve her well in life.

I'm constantly in awe of how our children come to us and the matching process that occurs and I've had a few of my friends who are waiting for their children ask me about it. When I look at Grace's travel group of 11 families I see an individual child that fits their family to perfection. Personally I believe there's an element of divine intervention in it. We are very blessed to have Grace as our daughter and cannot wait to see what the future holds for her!

25 kind words:

Isabella's Mommy and Daddy said...

BEAUTIFUL... I always tell you she is stunning..
Grace is going to be and do everything she puts her mind at doing...
You capture such amazing photos..
Love ya girly..
you know this keeps my spirits high..
so glad to have found you in bloggerville..
can't wait to meet you and your wonderful family one day..
Have a Great Sunday..

a Tonggu Momma said...

While I read your lovely post about Grace, I thought of how the Chinese view bamboo... they say that it is strong, VERY resilient; that its drooping leaves symbolize peace and tranquility; and that it bends, but does not break, because of laughter. That - it seems to me - is your Grace.

Jodee Leader said...

Adorable pictures of your sweet girl!

Dita said...

Well, I can tell you, Gail, that reading that beautiful post about your amazing daughter just melted me.

She is stunning with that mysterious, haunting smile of her and those glorious eyes.


Love, love the new blog design...fanstastic!

Life with JJ, Starr and Spice said...

I loved reading about the evolution of Grace and as a daughter in your family. Your words painted a beautiful picture that I could see in my mind. Your pictures were the icing on the cake.

Happy Sunday SFAM!

Kim said...

What a beautiful post Gail! You capture such awesome images of Grace. As other's have said, she is stunning and those eyes, they get me every time! I too believe there is a much bigger hand in the whole matching process.

Ellie said...

I really enjoyed learning about your Grace, she sounds like a beautiful soul. Your photos of her are absolutely gorgeous!

Dardi said...

Beautiful girl, beautiful post! I think one of the most wonderful things about adoption is knowing that out of this whole, big world we are put with the child that is meant to be in our family!

Karen said...

Sweet Post... I loved reading about her :)

Sue said...

Beautiful post and a beautiful daughter. : )

We also believe in the divine intervention of how our family was formed. The same with our travel group. Each girl fits with her parents. It is truly amazing.


Jboo said...

So sweet! She is a beautiful girl and her sweetness shines thru your lovely photos.

Like you, I do believe there was divine intervention in matching our girl with our family too.

Have a great week! Hope you're having some warmer weather!

The Little Family said...

Grace is just stunningly beautiful!

And your photos are amazing!!


Felicia said...

Grace is such a beauty...on the inside and out. These images are stunning!

Wanda said...

Just a perfectly beautiful tribute to your beautiful daughter.

Super Mommy said...

What a lovely testament to such a darling, sweet girl. As always, your pictures are amazing! It is wonderful to here that Grace has completely gotten over her speech obstacle. BTW, both of my girlies are also from Jiangxi and were adopted in Nanchang too.

Luv your new design btw!

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

BEAUTIFUL post Gail....OH MY GOSH...this is hands down one of my favorite posts ever!! The pictures are flippin fantastic.... I love that last black and white where her arm fades out of focus...AWESOME!!! The pictures are only part of what made this post so beautiul...... YOUR WORDS.... your description of her and what she has overcome almost made me cry. I too believe in the divine intervention.... our children have come to us because they were meant for us:)

Love Ya,


Steffie B. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steffie B. said...

you know that I think she is stunning....and her eyes....OMW.....unbelievable.....
this was a beautiful post Gail.....straight from a Mother's heart.....I loved it!

Colleen said...

Gail this post made me cry...I'm so sappy I know...but it did. I just get get this post. Grace is so beautiful!!! I love these stunning pictures of her..they really show her beautiful personality. {{{hug}}}

Laura L. said...

This is a beautiful post. It's wonderful to read about her and how special she is. So touching to read of your love for her. What a blessing, a gift from God.

China Dreams said...

Lovely post, as always.

I know exactly what you mean about the wait taking on meaning-you were meant to mother this child and she was meant to be your daughter.

My sister, one year younger, didn't talk until age four or five-she spent eight years in speech therapy-and is now a kindergarten teacher. The kids love that she still occasionally lisps; it reassures them when their words aren't exactly right. She is a beautiful person, inside and out, like your Grace.

Kayce said...

Wonderful post about a beautiful girl. I am counting the days until I am able to hold my girl and watch her unfold before my eyes as you have done with Grace. Such blessings to our lives.

Michelle said...

I read this on my iPhone over the weekend (too difficult to comment) and just thought it was the most special post, Gail. The photos are just gorgeous. Grace is such a beautiful girl and I loved learning even more what makes her so special. And special she is!! Just like her mother. I loved this post.

Robin said...

What a sweet post, gorgeous pictures and a beutiful girl! Loved your post ... super, super sweet!! You pictures are just gorgeous with such soft processing! Love it!!


Football & Fried Rice said...

I guess since I have never commented before it won't seem cliche or passe for me to tell you that Grace is BEAUTIFUL!! Like stunningly gorgeous! I loved reading about her personality and her resilience. Thanks for a wonderful post.

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