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Thanks so much for visiting us during our journey,
Paul, Beth, Tyler and Ana, Travis, Lindsey and Jordan and Sophie Ann!
Please email us.........
March 27, 2006
Gotcha Day!
Hey everybody! howaya? we're doing good.....trying to pass the hour and forty-five minutes we have left before we get my little baby! It's going very slowly!!! just a very short time and our lives are going to change forever!!! it amazes me! I’m a little scared and a lot excited!

other than the waiting, this trip has been a lot of fun! It's so different from the U.S.. I like Wuhan better than Beijing. has more color.  There are actually flowers here and it’s a lot warmer!

The language barrier is a lot of fun! it makes things more interesting! our guides add "r" to a lot of words like-- Chiner for China, famers for famous, warsh for wash, etc.... they also say things twice, yeah, say things twice.....for sure. yeah, mmhmm, yeah.....(i'll use it in a sentence or two for you:)).....There was a “wary “famers emperor. yeah, *wary “famers, yeah.....we have a lot fun with it.....though I’m sure our Chinese would be a lot worse than their English!!!!

Well, anyways, I gotta go get ready for the big moment!!! oh my goodness....ya'll better pray for us! I’m getting kinda nervous! we'll post pictures tonight!
miss you all lots! yeah, miss you all, yeah.....:D

…The moment we’ve waited for many months came and past and left us with a little blessing in our arms our not-so-little Sophie Ann Fuqing….what a beautiful baby girl and what an immense blessing for our family!

It was a very tense day to start out with. Everyone was up, fed and on the bus by 6:20 a.m. and we were off to the airport for another plain ride at 7:50! This one only lasted about an hour and a half….not bad! We arrived around 9:20ish and rounded up our luggage. And of course one bag had to get lost….grandma and grandpa’s bag!!! We left the airport and had an hour bus ride through Wuhan…

Interuption by Paul.

Ok, Lindsey was a very “reluctant writer” last night. Seems she would rather play with her sister rather than write and journal so you can all travel vicariously with us. So, for the sake of humanity, I will complete gotcha day and let her finish later when she attends the remedial journaling clinic!

The flight was interesting… Great aircraft, It was a 757 and was a fairly new vintage. Much better flying the Chinese National Airline in country than flying UNITED AIRLINES across the great pond. In fact, I don’t think I will ever voluntarily fly United again…after this trip. Anyway, we had a “western” in-flight breakfast that consisted of 2 small hotdogs, smothered in creamed peas and carrots with two little hockey puck hash browns on the side with a croissant, strawberry jam and a fruit cup chaser. Not bad at all, in fact, other than the Pizza last night, I think Lindsey ate more at that sitting than any other. So we arrived, left the airport (sans grampa’s luggage), checked in and waited an eternity to get the show going. The only “good” moment waiting was the joyous moment of Lindseys reunion with a hamburger (Chinese for hamburger!) We enjoyed bacon cheese burgers and fries to console our anxious hearts while waiting for the big moment.

When the time came, we went to the conference room here in the hotel, and completed some more paperwork with the AWAA guides. That lasted from 3-3:30 pm. When we sat down, the Kevin and Jennifer Gordon sat by us. In fact Kevin kept talking to me while I was writing important things on my adoption paperwork… of course I was using his pen, so I guess he wanted to participate in my adoption as well! It was difficult to complete things like “my name” etc… with him there. He is absolutely hilarious and will be a great father. Then, we waited again… till 4pm for the babies to arrive. As we were waiting, and sitting and waiting… I took a moment to pray with Kevin for the upcoming event. It takes a lot of courage to become an instant father to a toddler, and I truly believe God will place the right baby in each home! God blesses us in many ways, and on this trip I have been blessed by a beautiful new daughter, great new friends and a great travel group.

Anyway, the time has come, the air is alive with nerves, tension, fear, expectation, and of course overflowing with emotion. Most of the mom’s in our party came pre-lubed with 2.9 gallons of tears for each day, and they were beginning to flow! The orphanage directors came and had each family sign a 24 hour guardianship agreement and blessed each of us with a photo album of our babies first months. Sophie’s album has pictures from when she was 3 days old. At that point, I also suffered from minor eye leakage. It was incredible to see pictures of her growing up!! Rest assured Tanya, (a.k.a. Scrapbook Nazi), the quality of the book is poor and Beth will need to “re-scrap” the entire album!

All at once, our newest best friend Sherry (our AWAA in country guide) came in and said “ it is time, family #21….”and the feeding frenzy began. It was like a combination of sharks feeding in a pool of penguins, or maybe even like paparazzi chasing famous people at the Oscars… camera flashing everywhere, multiple videos being shot at the same time, it was nuts… Everyone (all Americans) in the room was teared up, and going crazy to get their babies… “Family 23..” and it was the Gordon’s turn. It was a beautiful site. Just add baby and water (tears) and instant Family. Jennifer was a mess, Kevin was speechless.. “family 24” and another babies life was changed…. “Family 25..”our turn!

Beth went forward ahead of me, and took Xue Fuqing in her arms… a touch from mom, a special look in the eyes, and God transformed her into our child, Instantly she became Sophie Ann Fuqing Lyman. And it was good. Emotions flooded our hearts, as I leaned to look closer, all I saw in her eyes was fear. My heart is racing, I long to reach out and touch her, to tell her it is OK. Sophie looks at mama, then to me. She is confused, scared, and alone… in the arms of another.

Although God has placed her in our home, she does not know it. Although our hearts our open, she does not feel it… as she studies us and gets to know us, her trust will grow, she will learn to need us, she will learn to rely on us, and she will learn to love us…

As I look at Sophie, I guess she is has heard the rumors about me… She cries when I get close. It will take some time!

After the hustle of the moment, it is suddenly over. The families are released to go to their rooms. As we depart, we wait and watch each family leave, some crying (parents as well as babies), all look anxious, some look scared (particularly the NEW parents!). As we are leaving the nannies from the orphanage pass by us, one looks and waves then steps over and quickly kisses Sophie and says good bye. It is a moment of pain and joy, which I captured on video, so you can feel it too! As we walk in the hall, the tears are coming and Sophie is a little scared. Beth retrieves the secret weapon, Cheerios. The international symbol for childhood comfort! Sophie demonstrates her finger coordination with a quick trip with a couple of cheerios to her mouth. That seals the deal, she has held her, fed her and now she is hers!

Once we got to our rooms, it was a crying fest for awhile. She was tired, scared and possibly hungry. Beth held her, sang to her and rocked her to sleep… a 2 hour nap. Just what she needed. When she woke, a different Sophie emerged from the fog of fear and change. I got the first smile playing peek-a-boo with her. Over the next few hours, we enjoyed several major events. She played with us, she walked with us, she ate KFC with us… what a joyous time. Grandpa and Gramma went into the wild (the streets of Wuhan), and Fetched a pail of chicken, potatoes and gravy, corn on the cob for dinner. Lindsey, was thrilled by the culinary delicacies.

It is time to close this now. Things to do, places to be… More on tomorrow’s post.
God Bless you all.
Paul, Beth, Lindsey, Sophie, Grandpa and Grandma!

P.S. Sorry no video, have not figured that out yet!
The Three Girls Waiting For The 4th
Getting Our Girl
Lindsey And Sophie
Sophie And Daddy
Happy Mom Scared Sophie