Since we were in Omaha on Friday for Daria's swearing-in ceremony, we visited the Henry Doorly Zoo. This was our first time to go to a zoo with our three new kiddos. We had a blast watching their reactions.
In a mixture of Russian and English, Oksana clearly told Lissie that the turtles we saw were her favorites.
We felt a bit off balance without Anna along, but the Lord is helping us adjust to our "new normal."
Then on Saturday, we dyed eggs. Again, this was a first for Daria, Alexander and Oksana.
Alexander got creative with the wire egg-dippers...
...while others got creative with their eggs.
Then yesterday, after a glorious celebration of our risen Saviour at church, the Nordstrom family came over to celebrate Easter with us.
In the picture below, Jaynie is reading a picture book about Easter to the Nordstrom's new daughter from Ethiopia, Meddie Grace, and our Russian, Oksana. This was both adoptees' first Easter in America.
Princess Bink introduced Meddie to her beloved birthday doll, Grace.
I love watching the signs of budding friendship that Oksana and Meddie Grace are demonstrating. What a precious gift from the Lord that these two little ones who don't speak English are finding comfort in each other's company! As soon as Meddie Grace arrived, Oksana was at her side.
While carving ham, Mr. Beaver took time out for a Skype call from Anna and Aaron.
Daria was happy to get the chance to say hello to her oldest sister.
The pleasure on Daria's face in the photo above as she talks to Anna captures the impact that the love and support of older siblings can have in the adoption of an older child.
Meddie has three wonderful older siblings who are playing a critical role in her adjustment. While my kids were talking to Anna and Aaron, I took the photo below of Sunshine, Rye Bread and T-Bird.
After the meal, the younger kids went outside. Our little Russian and the Nordstrom's little Ethiopian tried their hand at American baseball for the first time on this warm spring day. Meddie had donned Oksana's helmet to try bike riding also.
Before long the "older" kids from the two families came to cheer on their little sisters and give the baseball bat a swing.
Those of us who have surrendered our lives to Jesus have so much to celebrate on Easter; Christ's sacrificial death on the cross has purchased our adoption by God the Father. We're no longer orphans. We have a Father who loves us, and a purpose in life--to glorify Him.
This year our families had four additional reasons to rejoice on this holiday. Daria, Alexander, Oksana and Meddie Grace are home. Last year at Easter both our familes were longing for our children to be set free from their status as orphans. This Easter we were able to celebrate their completed adoptions as we relish our own. For us, Christ has paid the price and risen again.