I can't believe how fast this last year has gone. Oh my.
On Friday night, we took Sara out for dinner at one of our favorite Chinese restaurants. She loved it. Especially the rice. :-)
After dinner, we drove to Toys-R-Us to pick out her first "big girl" bike (aka, not the tiny little trike she's been trying to ride the past year.) I was feeling a bit nervous putting her on an actual bike even with training wheels. I imagined we would buy her the smallest bike available.
Until Geoff measured her and found out that our little girl is now BIG. Oh my. When did that happen?!? And, how come no one told me?!? :-)
Seriously, we found the right bike size (it looked huge) and she hopped on. What happened next made me laugh and cry at the same time.
My little girl rode the bike all around the store, without help! Seriously, I was in complete shock and was so proud of her. My little girl's growing up. Sniffle...
As she pedaled away, I imagined a backpack on her back full of her belongings as she rode off to college. (I know, I know. She'll be driving by then, but my heart just couldn't take in that scene quite yet!)
Our next stop was to get ice cream for dessert. Do you even have to ask what flavor she chose? :-)
That night, we let Sara open a gift early. Our sweet friends The Strands has sent a package that day with goodies for all of us. Sara was thrilled with what her beautiful friend, Esther, picked out for her.
The next morning, the first words out of Sara's mouth were, "Where are my birthday puppies? I need to go find Charlie and Esther!" (Yes, she named that after her precious friend and her baby doll Charlie, also a girl.) Oh my.
The rest of the weekend was a whirlwind of fun. Sara had selected a Dora theme and when she came down from her nap to see the dining room decorated, her little hands (at least one part of her is still small!) flew up to her mouth as she giggled with pleasure. Adorable.
She helped me pick out her cake and frosting at the store last week. Chocolate. Just chocolate. (Ah, a girl after my own heart.)
Her birthday breakfast was chocolate donuts and chocolate milk. Oh my.
Her birthday party was supposed to be at the roller-skating rink with our good friends. Unfortunately, they weren't open that morning, and so our friends suggested bowling. The Birthday Princess loved it.
After bowling, we sent our friends off for a date and took their precious kiddos home with us. Sara enjoyed her lunch with a chocolate cookie and then took a nice long nap.
That afternoon, she woke up to see her Daddy building her bike. Pink and purple, of course. (They don't make orange and green bikes, so she had to go with her second favorite colors.)
With only a slight hesitation and getting stuck in the grass, she rode off like a champ. Giggling and squealing the entire bike ride. It was hysterical.
Geoff and I both had to wonder if she'll do the same thing when she gets her driver's license. We'll need earplugs for sure!
We enjoyed watching all five kids happily playing at the park for over an hour. (We're really looking forward to seeing our new son in the mix. It is so true--the more the merrier!)
Sara later informed us that because she is four (said with a New Jersey accent), she should be allowed to play Wii. And so she did. Giggling and squealing the entire time she beat her big brother at boxing. And again, when she bowled 142 her first game. Oh my.
Seriously. Our lives have gotten even more rich in just a few days. Our little girl is growing up and she is continuing to blossom before our very eyes. So hard to imagine back to November 2006 when we first met our beautiful Chinese daughter. God is so good. Oh my.
I read this quote today in Bono's speech (and book) On the Move:
"Stop asking God to bless what you're doing. Get involved in what God is doing--because it's already blessed."
Indeed. God gave us hearts for His children in need. There are estimated to be 147 million orphans worldwide.
If you feel a tug to invite one (or more) orphans into your heart, home and family, I strongly encourage you to respond with a passionate yes. No, it's not easy, but it is truly one of the most incredible adventures God will ever take you on. He's already blessed it.
If you truly feel that adoption is not something God is calling you to, there are countless other ways to help a child in need. My blog is full of lots of ideas. :-)
Getting involved in what God is doing is the key to LIVING A BLESSED LIFE!
On that note, here are a few more priceless pics of my little-BIG girl: