Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Blessings from China by Roberta Diggs
Gladney mom, Roberta Diggs, has published her first book entitled Blessings from China. In this book Roberta takes you on a journey halfway around the world of her and her husband’s mission to rescue two abandoned children, Tracie and Marcie. You will laugh and cry as you follow the moving experience of Roberta and Billy as they become first-time parents in the forties. It is a poignant memoir about the reality of adoption, spiced with humor and the blessings of God. Blessings from China is sure to warm your heart and inspire your soul.

Roberta Diggs is a devoted wife and mother busy being a domestic engineer for her family. She has spoken on occasion to groups about her journey of adoption to China through the Gladney Center. She has a great passion for the people of China and especially for the orphanages that are full of children. She has been active in church, teaching young people and has been the women’s missionary leader. Roberta and her husband, Billy, live on a farm in western Oklahoma where they enjoy time with their two beautiful daughters, Tracie and Marcie.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Shanghai SuperKids Volunteers Visiting Shanghai Children's Home

Janet Fink hols up a child of special need in Shanghai (above)

Dian, Janet and Pat in Shanghai Super Kids shirt (right)

SSK Volunteers with SCH staff and Children. (above)
The man in white shirt is Director Wang from Shanghai Children's Home

Gladney mom, Janet Fink, and two professional therapists, Pat Marcus and Diane Schmidt, of the Shanghai SuperKids just returned from their first volunteer trip to the Shanghai Children's Home. It was a huge success and one they will never forget. While there they saw a total of 300 children and worked with more than 100 of them. They trained at least 20 caretakers and 20 rehabilitation staff. They were able to identify and measure 4 preteens with spinal cord injury who need better wheel chairs and identify and measure a small group of children who need walkers and special chairs to help them sit up and function more normally. On their last day, the director of the Shanghai Children's Home gave each of the volunteers a special certificate that thanked them for their work and for respecting the SCH guidelines. The Shanghai SuperKids are looking to raise more money with the hope to return in October to follow up on the work they began and to see the remaining 400 children. Shanghai SuperKids was initiated by Janet Fink and is a project of Glandey's China Initiative. For more information, please visit

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

MJ and Nici Are In China 3--Nanchang--Gotcha!!!

Monday, July 09, 2007

On Sunday, we left Beijing for Nanchang and arrived at approximately 12:45 pm. We were met by our new guide who brought us to our hotel. While enroute to the hotel, she informed us that we would meet our babies! When we arrived at the hotel, we only had about 2 hours to get ready and freshen up before leaving for the CCAA office. After what seemed like an endless drive, we finally arrived at the building. We had to take and elevator up to the 26th floor. When we arrived, the babies had not arrived, so we had to wait for them. We paced the floor for what seemed like hours. Finally, the babies arrived! None of them were crying. They all were so good and it was such a wonderful moment to finally meet our daughter. Words cannot explain how we felt. Also, my greatest fear of not recognizing her, went out the window. I knew her right when I saw her! The CCAA building was very hot and miserable. It seemed like we were there forever.
When we got back to the hotel, we changed Meghan and dressed her in a 9mos outfit. We quickly learned that she would need a couple of 6 month outfits because she is so tiny. We did not expect her to be so little! We took her to dinner with our group and she is such a good little eater! After dinner we took her back to the room and played with her until bathtime. She did great in the tub, but whimpered when we first put her in the little tub the hotel provided. After bathtime we soothed her and she fell asleep on my chest, while her daddy worked on some paperwork for the CCAA.
Here are some pictures from our special day!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

MJ and Nici Are In China 2--Beijing!!!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Today we had a full day of touring. We first went to a Jade Factory where we learned how to tell the difference between quality Jade and fake Jade. It was very informative and we learned a lot about Jade! Then we had the opportunity to walk around and look at beautiful Jade goods. We could also purchase items at this location.

In this picture, the gentleman is carving the Jade. After he carves it, another worker then polishes it. After our visit to the Jade factory, we headed north out of Beijing towards the Great Wall. The view was beautiful as we approached the wall.

These are padlocks lining the wall as you first begin the climb. The locks are placed there by lovers and then once it is attatched, they throw away the key to symbolize their long lasting love.
Here is a view from the first guard tower looking up the wall. Some of the steps were high, some were short. They were very uneven, making the climb up the wall tiring and treacherous. It was also very hot! We were sweating like crazy!
I was able to make it up the wall to an area between the second and third guard towers. In this picture you scan see some of the wall snaking amongst the mountains.
After we toured the wall, we went to lunch at the Friendship store. This was fun and there were so many great things to buy and see. This store is government owned, so you can't barter, but it was an interesting way of shopping because you tell the sales representative what you want. She then writes it up on a ticket that you are given as you enter the store. After she gives you a copy of the ticket, you take it to the cashier and pay for it. The sales representative then gives you your items. After a little bit of shopping, we headed to the Ming Tombs. This was very beautiful and the grounds were immaculate. The tombs are guarded by animals, mystic beasts, and soldiers.

Once we finished walking the grounds at the Ming Tombs, we headed back to the city and then went to tour a Silk Carpet Factory. This was very interesting and we can see why those carpets are so expensive. Each one is hand made. The girls who make the carpets have to take a break every 30 minutes because of the tedious work.

We ended the day with a nice Peking Duck dinner. They carved the duck before bringing it to our table, but they put the meat in these nice porcelin dishes.

After dinner, we headed back to the hotel to pack and get some rest before our travel to Nanchang.
This is a picture of our hotel room. It was very nice and the beds are a little hard, but we were so tired everyday that it did not really bother us. Overall we really enjoyed staying at the hotel. Today (Sunday) we are flying to Nanchang. We are hoping we will get Meghan today, but we will definately get her tomorrow. I have no idea how our blog looks because I am unable to look at it, but I can post. So I hope it makes sense! We are going to try to post updates from Nanchang, providing that we are able to connect to the internet. Hopefully our next post will be from Nanchang! Only 8 hours until we hopefully see Meghan!

Friday, July 06, 2007

MJ and Nici Are In China--Beijing!!!

Editor's Note: This is from MJ and Nici's blog. For more pictures and back entries, please visit their blog here.

We finally made it to Beijing! Our flight over was uneventful, but long. I was nervous about all the flying, but that was quickly forgotten when we stepped foot in China!

We left Dallas at eight in the morning on Wed. and arrived in SFO at 940am pacific time. We left SFO at 1115am and 11hours and 26 minutes later we touched down in Beijing. Customs was busy, but we got through it with no problems.
We were not expecting such a nice hotel! It is very nice and it has all the ammenities that a person needs when traveling on such a long trip! This is a picture of the countdown clock for the Olympics on the Cultural Museum in Tian'an Men Square.
Here is a picture of the gate that led to the Forbidden City.
A picture of some rickshaws driving down the street in the Hutong district of Beijing.

This is a picture from the Silk Factory Institute. We learned how the silk is made and then processed to make goods. It was very interesting!

This is a picture from the Chinese Acrobatic Show. This was a great way to end the day! We really enjoyed the show and were amazed at the flexibility and balance all of the performers had.

Tomorrow we will continue our adventures and I plan to post some pictures on the blog tomorrow.