Our day started bright and early with the swearing in of the youngest (future) Morningstar family U.S. citizen and our U.S. Consulate appointment. The appointment was simple and smooth - we and about 15 other adoptive families agreed on behalf of our children to uphold the laws and ideals of the United States and then they called us up the window and looked through WanYing's paperwork and it was done. Tomorrow we'll pick up WanYing's Chinese passport with her U.S. visa and then she's ready to enter the U.S. Hooray!
Here's one interesting tidbit that the consulate officer shared with us: In 2010 about 63% of U.S. adoptions from China were special needs adoptions. So far in 2011 it looks like that percentage will rise to 75%. I guess that's not that surprising given the drastic slowdown of regular-program referrals from China, but I'm still impressed that such a high percentage of adoptions are of waiting kiddos.
Then we headed to a park to romp out some energy and then back to the hotel for lunch an naps before our big dinner cruise down the Pearl River.
We had a blast out on the high seas (read: languid river). The boys spent the majority of their time cramming as many cookies into their mouths as possible and then scurrying up to the upper decks to watch the city lights passing by without the distraction of windows. Sasha spent her time trying to talk us into taking her up to the upper deck with varying success and plenty of tears. WanYing just ate noodles and greens - she is getting so good at feeding herself!
Today's prayer request:
Time away from home is definitely starting to wear on Sasha. She's doing so well, but so much travel, all the "foreign" experiences, and adjusting to a new family member is a lot to ask an almost-four-year-old to absorb.
Please pray with us that we will be able to express to Sasha the two things that will never, ever change in her life: she is loved irrevocably and she is not in charge. Pray that her heart will always be open to these truths and that she'll feel them with a special certainty right now at the tail end of our amazing trip to China.