Two China Dolls and a Prince!

This blog chronicles the story of 2 of our adoptions, both older children when they came home. It begins in 2008 and will continue in the hopes we can be of encouragement and information to anyone thinking of older child adoption.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


I feel kind of bad as I start this because I didn't do this for our first adoption. So this blog will be the story of Jazmin AND Judi as we pursue Judi's adoption and they become sisters. First, a little about our family. We are the Cavenders: there is my husband, JR, and I (Debbie), my oldest bio daughter, Jessica (13), my bio son, James III (10), and Jazmin, our youngest at 4 1/2, adopted on Nov. 15, 2004 at 17 months old. We adopted her using Holt International, and from the day of application to Gotcha Day, it took 20 months. When we went to bring her home, she was not a happy camper for 3 days! She would not stand, crawl, smile, or let me go! Didn't like Daddy at all! She was a very quiet, withdrawn baby and would really not interact with anyone but me. After 3 days, our guide gave her some medicine to make her poop; that night, she walked for the first time; I cried. After that, she never looked back! Her beautiful personality just started blossoming; she was funny, and sweet, and just knocked her brother and sister's socks off when we came home. I had been afraid that I would not love her as much as my biological children, but when they placed her in my arms, I was overwhelmed. She was ours, clear and simple.
Now she is the light of all our lives and so excited about her sister-to-be, Judi Elizabeth. The idea of adopting again and adding a fourth child to our family is scary, but we have spent countless hours in prayer and believe this is God's plan for our life. We found Judi on the SN photolisting at Adoption House, her list name is "Ruby". She is almost 3 (April). We are currently LOI and 13 days into the wait for PA. Paperchasing has begun in earnest. Please follow along with us on our journey to bring Judi home to us.

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Follow along with us on a wonderful journey to China to bring home our fourth child, Judi Elizabeth. We have been to China already once to bring home Jazmin Xiu at 17 months old. She is now 4 3/4 and very excited about having a little "mei-mei" to be pals with.
We have spent about a year praying about the decision to adopt again. Adding a fourth child seemed like an impossibility at first. THe more we prayed, however, the more it seemed right. We always said we wanted 4 kids, we just didn't know God intended for us to build our family in a non-traditional way!
So we searched and searched for just the right little girl; we had an idea of the special needs we felt we could take care of. So of course, when we found Judi, her special need was one we had never even imagined. After careful review of her file by medical people and some input from folks who have Been There, Done That, and yes, more prayer, we decided to go for it. As I go on to explain in our first entry, this is not just Judi's story, but Jazmin's as well as she will be traveling with us to China to bring Judi home.
Judi's Chinese name is Wu Wang Rou and she is in foster care in Kunming, China. Her special need is listed as "encephalatrophy", which is basically atrophy of the brain. Sounds scary, I know. She had a bout of encephalitis at 7 months old which caused some structural changes to her brain, hence the "atrophy" label. According to all the reports we've gotten, however, she is doing just fine and is developmentally on target for a 3 year old; while we are mentally preparing for any outcome, we are thankful that God has shown his grace so far on this little one!