A Merry Christmas, indeed! 

Nothing new to report on our adoption journey. Things will likely move pretty slow now, with only a finished document here and a mailed package there. Nothing super exciting, unless you find government documents invigorating!

However, I will consider it a great day when I get an updated picture- and that happened yesterday! I received an e-mail from our agent at about noon, but because we were busy traveling and seeing family I didn’t even pull out my phone to see it until well after dark. I was so excited to see an e-mail from her with an attachment! Even though I can’t share the whole picture, I can show most of it.

You can’t see, but she’s got a much more amiable look on her sweet face (compared to the others, in which she looked scared or at least a little unsure). Her hat says “Merry Christmas,” and after seeing her beautiful face, it truly was! (Just for some size reference, Ruthie is about 2 inches shorter and 7 lbs lighter than Allen- a tiny thing!) I had been thinking about her all day- even tearing up in church yesterday morning because my heart longed for her so very much.

I just keep praying that God would provide a supernatural peace in Ruthie’s heart. I want so much for her to know how much we love her. How much her whole family, church family and our friends love her. I’m just so afraid that with all she’s been through, she will be feeling unloved or unwanted. And even though I know nothing could be farther from the truth, there’s no way for me to wrap her up in my arms and show her how untrue that is. At least, not until fall of 2017.

Please continue to pray for us as we venture closer, however slow, to getting to bring our baby girl home. We will be sending lots of family photos and toys and books her way- hopeful that material gifts can convey a sense of caring and thoughtfulness until the day we meet.

I hope you all had a Merry Christmas close to the ones you love the most.