Thursday, June 25, 2009

Random things about Julianna

1. She loves to eat - anything and everything! Green beans, corn, french fries, creamed potatoes, hamburger meat. The only thing she has not liked is ice cream. We think it's too cold for her.
2. She sleeps very deeply for 10-11 hours a night (Her paperwork was right on this one.)
3. She has learned to wave bye-bye, to do patty cake, and she gives us these big open mouth kisses!
4. She finally likes taking a bath after Mama got in with her. She loves to splash and play with her bath toys.
5. She likes the color orange. It's the color of her favorite bath toy and also her favorite page in her "Who Loves Baby" photo album.
6. She likes to swing on the front porch swing and sometimes nestles her head on my chest as we are swinging.
7. She babbles and smiles constantly.
8. She knows her name and always turns when called.
9. She has gotten clingy to Mama lately which of course I LOVE!!
10. She mimics me putting lotion on my hands and brushing her hair. She will touch the lotion bottle and then rub her little hands together. She will also take her little brush and try to brush her hair.
11.She is the most BEAUTIFUL baby in the world! (OK, I am a little biased.)

Julianna and Mama with her cousins, Anna and Sarah Beth

Julianna and Daddy with her cousin, Will

I love this picture of my little angel!

The Jernigans on our 1st Sunday at our church

Saturday, June 20, 2009


We got home late Wednesday night and it is so good to be in our home with Julianna! After travelling for about 29 hours straight, we were greeted at the airport by our family and friends. It was so good to see everybody although Ed and I agreed that we are not sure what we even said to anybody due to sheer exhaustion. Julianna was very good on the long flight from Shanghai to Atlanta and slept a good bit of the time. It was so sweet to get home and have signs up in the neighborhood and in our home welcoming us and Julianna and a Build-A-Bear was in her room from her friends Cody and Lily. I also heard that one of my friends who I won't name (Joy Hetler) actually picked the lock of our house by using a card! I am wondering if she has done that before. :)

I want to say a special thank you to my sister Trina for keeping my blog up while we were in China and couldn't access it. She is the best sister and friend I could ever ask for and has been a constant support to me over these many years. I love you, Trina!

We have been trying to get on a schedule but we all 3 have our days and nights mixed up. That will work out in time. Julianna and I were able to spend about 6 hours today together alone and everything went great! We hope and continue to pray that God would heal her little heart and mind.

Thanks for all the sweet comments left on the blog. Ed and I have been reading them over the past couple of days. Thanks also for the prayers that have been offered up on our behalf. We could feel them literally in China.

Here are some pictures of our greeting at the airport:

Monday, June 15, 2009

We Love Guangzhou/Red Couch Photos

We got to Guangzhou late Friday night and really like it here so far. It kind of reminds me of Florida with the humid weather and tourist shops. Julianna had her medical appointment yesterday for the US consulate side of the paperwork. Needless to say, there were many tears shed by Julianna. After that we went shopping, and everything is dirt cheap (children's dresses for less than $10). We also went to a McDonald's and had some good American food. All of the stares and people obviously talking about us made us feel like Brad and Angelina:)

On Sunday morning, we went to Christ Church for the morning Chinese/English service. It was a blessing because it's been such a dream of ours to be in church as a family. The pastor preached on being thankful, and we are definitely thankful to the Lord for Julianna. We had the famous "Red Couch" pictures in the afternoon. Let's just say it was traumatic. We did get a picture, but it was not without some major tears.

Julianna can sit and lay between Ed and me on the bed now without tears, and he can get up a little with just some whimpering on her part. She is still laughing and smiling a lot. She also sat on half of my lap and half of Ed's on Sunday for lunch. Here are some pictures of the Jernigans:

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Last Day in Nanchang

Today was our last full day in Nanchang and tomorrow we head to Guangzhou for the US consulate stuff. We saw a lot of progress with Julianna today. She has been smiling and giggling most of the day. I started blowing kisses at her and she blew some back at me! She also reached out for me a couple of times and she can now sit for several minutes at a time on Ed's lap facing out instead of always being chest to chest with him. We talked with the UAB clinic and they reassured us that this happens all the time. We just have to keep working with her and be patient since her little world has been turned upside down. Her little smile is the most beautiful thing and can light up the room. She just grins from ear to ear. We toured a pagoda down the street with some of our travel group and went to a grocery store. Pretty interesting trying to buy stuff when everything is in Chinese! Otherwise, it was a pretty low key day spent together just the 3 of us. We are very excited to be going to Guangzhou tomorrow. It's a very large city with lots of shops and actual American type food. We will be staying at the White swan hotel which is famous in the China adoption world. We will complete the American side of the paperwork there and come home next Wednesday!
Here are some pics of the last couple of days:

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Ancient Anyi Village

Today we toured an ancient, 1,000-year-old village in the countryside. It was amazing to see the workers and water buffalo out in the rice paddies and to visit a village where the people do not even have running water. I told Ed that we in America just don't realize how blessed we are.
We finally got a lot of smiles from Julianna today and some laughs from her too. She still has to be held by Ed at all times. He left the hotel room today for 30 minutes, and she cried uncontrollably until he got back. Even after she was back in his arms, she still cried for a long time. If anybody has any advice on what we should do, please share it in the blog comments and my sister can relate it back to us. Julianna is just so traumatized right now, and we know it will take time. But it's wearing Ed out, and it's really hard finally being a Mom but being unable to hold my child without her sobbing.
Tomorrow we go to visit a local park, and then on Friday we leave for Guangzhou! We're having trouble attaching pictures, so we will try to post some tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Getting To Know Each Other in China

Everything is good here in China. We are still getting to know Julianna, and she is going through a lot of grieving. She is definitely a "Daddy's girl" right now and won't let him out of her sight. She has to be touching him at all times. This is really tiring Ed out, but he is hanging in there. She will let me play with her and feed her as long as she is in Daddy's lap. Please pray that she will soon be able to come to me without having a meltdown.

Yesterday we went to the Civil Affairs office and finalized the adoption on the China side. She is OURS in the eyes of China now! We are taking it easy today and not going on the planned tour. We think it would be better for Julianna to stay here at the hotel and not have a lot of stress on her.

Please continue to pray for all three of us. We can feel your prayers all the way over here in China. Here are some pictures from the last couple of days.

The Jernigan Family!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Gotcha Day!

Lee Anne and Ed are having some trouble getting Internet access right now. I (Trina) will be updating everyone until they arrive in Shanghai and can regain access. Julianna is now with Ed and Lee Anne. They both have described her as a "little doll" and even more adorable than her picture. We'll be adding pictures to this post as soon as Lee Anne can send them.

Julianna is already sleeping in her crib through the night in the hotel room. She lets Lee Anne feed her and give her a bottle, and she loves to be held by Ed. It seems she is already well on her way to being a "Daddy's girl." So far, they have only had one major issue with her-- bathtime! She hates it!

Lee Anne and Ed both ask for continued prayer in the attachment process. Julianna also needs our prayers as she continues to experience so many changes and sees so many new things in the days to come. Finally, pray for Lee Anne and Ed to have continued strength (emotionally and physically) as they continue on this journey.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

We Made It To China!

We are in China now! After about 30 hours of flight time, we made it to Beijing about 11:00 pm last night. We've had a great day of touring Beijing today. We went to Tienanmen Square, the Forbidden City, the site of the 2008 Olympics, and we climbed the Great Wall. Did I just say we climbed the Great Wall? It still doesn't seem real that we are actually here. We have a great group of people we are traveling with in China.

Tomorrow is the day we have been waiting for for years. It's "gotcha day" for Julianna! We'll fly to Nanchang tomorrow, and she should be in our arms tomorrow afternoon around 3:00 or 4:00 pm China time or 2:00-3:00 am Central time (Sunday). Please continue to pray that she'll have an easy transition and will bond with each of us. Please pray that this won't be too traumatic, and that we can calm any fears that she has. Below are some pictures of the day and a look at some of the things we did.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Last Post Before China

We can't believe that after all these years, we are leaving for China in the morning to get our precious baby Julianna. We just had the best send off with all our family there. It meant so much to see everybody before we leave in a few short hours. The Bible verse that has been going through my head all day is Romans 8:28 - All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. His purpose for all eternity has been for us to be the parents of Julianna - a sweet angel born on the other side of the world. We hope and pray that we can be the parents that she needs for us to be. Please continue to pray for us over the next 2 weeks. Here are some specific prayer requests:

-Julianna would know that we are her parents
-That she would quickly and easily bond to us
-That we would know how to meet her needs
-Safety in travel
-Physical health for all three of us
-That God would bless us all with patience, peace, and calmness with no anxiety as we go through this process


We are coming to get you baby girl! We can't believe the time has come and in a few short days you will be in our arms. We are praying for you and that you are able to easily bond with us. We can't wait to finally get to you and kiss those cheeks and lips. May God richly bless you and give you peace.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

2 days!

We are now down to 2 days until we leave for China to get Julianna! We have been busy packing and cleaning and baby proofing the house. It seems so "surreal" that this is actually happening. We are continually amazed at the Lord's mercy and grace that is shown to us. Whether through phone calls from friends or one of our neighbors offering to mow our yard, we have received so much encouragement and support. We can't thank all of you enough. We still have packing to do tomorrow. We have all of Julianna's stuff packed in one suitcase and now we have to get my and Ed's stuff into another suitcase. I guess it is obvious who is taking priority. :) We also received another picture of Julianna from the Spanish group sponsoring her orphanage. Here it is:

Isn't she the most precious baby in the world??

We enjoyed a picnic on Saturday that was given for us and 2 other families who already have arrived home with their children. Wanda Shaw, our Chinese teacher, hosted it and we had traditional Chinese food and a big cake. Wanda gave us a very special gift - a picture of Julianna with her name, birth date, adoption date, and province in Chinese. We had a wonderful time even though it was very hot out. I guess that is good practice for the hot weather in China!