28 Jun

Zinnia told me today, “mom, zinnia so so so happy!!!!!”

zinnia kyacking on lake michigan

It came out of the blue.

Zinnie and her biggest brother Christopher

Then she said, “Mom, I love you so much!”Zinnia and Lainee's first time tubing.  "fasta daddy!"

You may think that she is happy because everyday at the jones house is fun fun fun!  You would be wrong.  It’s not all fun, all the time.

I’ve been thinking and praying this afternoon and I truly believe the reason for their joy and happiness is family.

They are happy and joyful and thriving because they were created to live in a family, our family, and they are finally here.

Boundaries, jobs, responsibilities, rules; these family things are bringing these girls growth and joy.

When I hand out the jobs verbally…”you-load, you-unload, you-laundry check, you-walk the dog, you-tidy this, Zinnie-clean out the hot tub, Lainee-vacuum the rugs”.  They are joyful, happy to work and be part of the family.  They are normal and will ask for someone else’s job next time, sometimes, but always they are happy to be “in it” with all of us.

Chris and I attended the first Empowered to Connect conference.  It was scary at the time but I am using so much of what I learned at that conference and from reading the book and watching the videos.  We are using their “connecting  principles”.

I am daily trying to connect with these girls.  I am trying to correct them and set boundaries and yet not provoke them to anger, to keep their transition as stress free as possible.  This comes with lots of “yes” answers through out the day, and the gentle art of saying “no” when needed in a very creative way.  I truly believe that is why our transition has been so smooth.  God’s grace.  Many have asked how the transition has been.   Peaceful and beautiful.  The Connected Child helped us.


Today Zinnia brought up from the basement deep freeze an old bag of dunken donut’s decaf coffee.  She brought it to me and said very respectfully, “mommy may I zinnia please eat this?”  In the rush of the day and the craziness that was happening around me I wanted to say, “Yuk Zinnia!  no!  it’s coffee, old coffee!” and I would have grabbed it and tossed it out, done, on to the next thing.  She would have whined and begged and maybe even cried, “mommy….PLEASE ZINNIA EAT THIS!!!!”  Believe me, I have seen this, when I forget our goals in parenting and when I try to fit them into the same box as our other children.

I have a goal in each interchange with my new daughter, CONNECTING!  So, I stop and say, “YES!  You can look at that but I don’t think you are going to want to eat that, sweet heart!” real playfully.  She says, “Yes, yummy for Zinnia!”  I say “Ok, yes, let’s open it up!”  I get down on her level and smile and hand the coffee back to her.  She opens it and sticks her hand in and it sticks to her wetted finger and she puts the decaf coffee grounds into her mouth.  Then we smile!  We laugh and we hug and she says, “sorry mommy!  I don’t know!!!”  And that is how we establish trust and connection.  All day long.

Connecting, laughing, allowing them to discover within my boundaries.

Allowing their hearts to adjust to our family, to heal, to learn to love and trust.

I want to avoid a melt down at all cost.

A crying fit, a melt down gets in the way of our goal.  It messes with their brain chemistry (Karen Purvis proves how in her book).

It’s not for my ease or convenience but for her well being, her growth, her health, her heart.  I am taking very serious the command not to provoke my children to anger.  This fun, playful engagement with lots of Yeses is doing it for us.  “Mom, lainee shower?” (when it’s 1:00 in the afternoon)  “Yes, my pretty girl!”  “YES!!!!!” she replies excitedly.  “Yes for the shower after we eat with daddy tonight! (then my playful distraction to avoid a negative response because I actually just told her “no” )…come with me and let’s pick flowers to put on the table when we eat tonight with daddy!”  “Ok, yes mommy!”

Karen Purvis explained to me that every newborn has a full 1st year to bond with mom.  They are hearing all day long, “yeses”.  Yes, I am the one who loves you and takes care of you.  My girls never had that with me, so we are doing it now, as 7 year olds.

So, I finally got a chance to take the girls to a Chinese restaurant.  Wow, was that fun!!!  Neither one spoke any chinese.  They answered questions that the staff people asked them in Chinese with English mostly!  It was crazy.  The staff was all questions for me and I WILL be back.  What a great experience for us all.  The manager lady told me that she asked them if they were happy with their new family and that they both said yes.  I said to her that sometimes I’m worried that they don’t know they will stay with us forever.  Can you remind them of that in Chinese?  So, she did (I hope) and then Zinnia said a few sentences in Chinese to her.  The manager lady cried, caught her breath and wiped her eyes.  She walked away and then came back.  I asked her what Zinnia said.  She said to me, “they were not treated kindly in China.  it very very sad.  they never want to go back. she knows she won’t.  she say they beaten when naughty at the orphanage and no food. She very happy and it so good you bring them here.”  Then she told me that she doesn’t work on tuesday and thursday and she wants to have the girls to her house on those days.  Yikes!  I think we will stick with visiting her at the restaurant, but, she was very sweet and kind.  Looking forward to purposeful conversations with the people we met today.



One Response to “”

  1. Lynne June 28, 2011 at 3:03 pm #

    One word – fabulous !! I love reading your precious words of love and hope. I so enjoy seeing the pictures of your children, and the videos are the greatest. I cannot believe how your two newest treasures are talking up a storm – how cute is that!!! They are so happy and content. Their happy faces just melt my heart. I’m so thankful they are “home” with their Forever Family. Thank you God ! :))

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