Friday, October 31, 2008

Brand Spankin' New Pictures of Clare!!!

Another Angel sent to us by God and Amy E.

"Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world." James 1:27

This is Mui. She lives in Shantou, China, and she knows our little girl. She also volunteers for Love Without Boundaries (our favorite humanitarian organization). She has graciously agreed to show us around Shantou and to interpret for us as we visit Clare's orphanage on Wednesday, November 12. We think it is so important for Clare to be able to show us where she has lived and the important people in her life.

Once again, our thanks to Amy E. for her invaluable help in our journey to our daughter. We invite each of you to visit the Love Without Boundaries website at and blog at When you visit these sites you will discover the wonderful work that LWB does in so many areas to help Chinese children. Your donations can help save lives and bring orphaned children into forever families.

Introducing Clare's Aunts, Uncles & Cousins

Aunt Jan and Uncle Dave - Jim's sister and her husband

Cousin Brandon (Jan and Dave's son)

Cousin Darcy (Jan and Dave's daughter)

Uncle "Bubba" (Brycie's brother, Bryan)

Uncle Sean (Brycie's step-brother)

Cousin Mia and Aunt Audra (Sean's daughter and wife)

Cousin Morgen (Sean's son)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Clare's First Package!!

Clare's Godparents, Kent and Paige, sent Clare a book called "Ruby's Wish," described as "an engaging portrait of a determined young girl and a family who rewards her independent spirit."

Paige said that this is one of her favorite books ever, and we are sure that it will be one of Clare's too!!

Thank you Kent, Paige, Joe, Alice, Mary & Harris!!

Clare's Godparents and family







Saturday, October 25, 2008

Why we chose the name "Clare"

Clare is named after St. Clare of Assisi. St. Clare was an Italian noblewoman, the daughter of a wealthy family, who was born in 1194 and died in 1253. As a young woman she heard St. Francis of Assisi preach, and she longed to imitate St. Francis and live a life of poverty for Jesus. She was co-foundress of the Order of "Poor Clares." St. Francis took Clare and her sister Agnes to the small residence adjoining the Church of San Damiano, and it was there that the order was established with Clare appointed superioress of the convent. During an attack on the convent of San Damiano by soldiers of Frederick II, Clare held a ciborium before them, and they retreated. Clare found such great joy in serving God that she once said, "They say that we are too poor, but can a heart which possesses the infinite God be truly called poor?"
We took this photo of the statue of St. Clare at the Church of San Damiano in Assisi, Italy, in July of 2007, while we were on a pilgrimage to Rome and Assisi. We prayed for our Clare in the Basilica of St. Clare; we attended Mass at the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi and at the Church of San Damiano.
St. Clare and St. Francis, pray for us!

The Tag Says It All!!

Clare's Room

Here is Clare's new room. The walls are painted; the bed is made; Ivy the American Girl Doll is waiting; all we need is our precious daughter!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Confirmation of Consulate Appointment!!

God has graciously answered our prayers and the prayers of our friends and family. Today we received word that our Consulate appointment has been confirmed for November 19. We will leave Oklahoma City on Friday, November 7 for Guangzhou (arriving on November 8). We will be united with our darling daughter, Clare, on either Monday, November 10, or Tuesday, November 11. We will return as a forever family on Friday, November 21.

So long as we don't experience internet difficulties in China, we intend to update this blog regularly. We invite you to share in our joyful journey to Clare Isabella JiaQi.

God bless you all. Please continue to pray for us.

Brycie and Jim

Friday, October 17, 2008

Travel Approval!!!

Thank you, Jesus!!

We waited 22 days from LSC to TA. All we need now is our Consulate Appointment. If we get the dates our agency is requesting, we will be leaving between November 6 and November 9 and returning between November 20 and November 23.

Clare Isabella JiaQi, here we come!!

Pray for us.

Brycie and Jim

Sunday, October 12, 2008


After 65 days of waiting, we received our LSC (Letter Seeking Confirmation - Official Referral) for Clare on September 25, 2008!!! Woohoo! We are now awaiting travel approval. We have sent in our visa information. We hope to travel in mid November. If we don't go then, we will have to wait until after Brycie's law school finals, which will mean mid December.

We began this entire process 2 years ago when we attended a seminar in Enid, OK. We had the great fortune of meeting Paige Keithly, Regional Office Representative for Great Wall China Adoption. Two years later, we count Paige, her husband, Kent, and their four beautiful children as close family friends. In fact, we have prayed for many months about God's choice to be Clare's Godparents and are delighted to announce that Paige and Kent have graciously accepted the privilege, honor, and responsibility of being Godparents of our darling daughter.

During our sojourn toward Clare we have had the opportunity to meet many incredible people in the adoption community - all who have such a deep love and compassion for orphaned children. May we begin with Amy Eldridge, Wendy Petersen, and Suzanne Damstedt who do such wonderful work through Love Without Boundaries. Amy has been such a blessing in recent months since she has known Clare for 5 years. Wendy has offered many prayers and much support for us and for Clare. Suzanne has been a wealth of information as she has adopted two older daughters from China. God bless them all!

In our church family, many of our friends have fervently prayed for us and for this adoption. Our heartfelt thanks to Theresa and Wally, Bill and Sue, Steve and Michele, Mike and Katie, Matt and Stephanie, Lauren and JC, Jeff and Aimee, John and Seyan, and Diane (from Sacred Relics). We truly appreciate each person who has lifted us and Clare up in prayer.

Jesus, we trust in You! God's timing is always perfect - although we tried to help Him speed things along. We are thankful that God has blessed US with the joy of raising this beautiful, precious child! We accept the responsibility of training up this child in the way she should go!