The girls decided to use their art class to make some valentines boxes and cards. They had lots of fun decorating their boxes about a week before. They also made nice little homemade cards for each other and stuffed them into their boxes. Since Valentines Day happened to also land on the Chinese New Year Holiday, they just sort of combined the two! They used their Valentine boxes to include New Years treats and asked us to put their red envelopes in there too. I asked, "How do you know we plan to give you money?!" Their reply was, "Everyone gives their kids money for Chinese New Year!!" They were right and knew it all too well. They have the best of both worlds. They get to celebrate both Western and Chinese holidays! Chinese New Year is a huge holiday here much like Christmas is in the West. The families all gather together to share meals and fellowship. There are a lot of traditional things that go on as well and the giving of red envelopes containing money, called Hong Bao literally translated "red bag," is just one of those traditions. As a sign of respect, they then bow and thank the parents/grandparents. Darn! We forgot that part! Perhaps that's why they suggested we put it in their boxes! Actually, I think they just wanted the enjoyment and surprise of getting up the next morning to see what all was put in that box all that week leading up to that day (they weren't allowed to peek beforehand)! Although it wasn't a lot, they weren't disappointed when they found money, candy (a special treat--from the US we'd had someone bring over with them on their way), and Valentines cards. It was kinda like a mini Christmas package! They were excited and enjoyed their candy for more than a week. That is except for Hannah, who thought she needed to eat all hers the first day or two, then wanted the other girls' candy when she found out they still had some left!
We are the Rippee family! We manage and are house parents in a home for older orphaned girls in China. It's called the Forever Home, and it is a project of New Day Foster Home. Like all foreign workers at NDFH, we receive no salary for our work, so if you would like to support our family's living expenses, please click the button below to donate through PayPal. Donations are tax-deductible. To learn more about the Forever Home and ways you can directly support this work, please visit New Day Foster Home's website.
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Elise was adopted at the age of 3 years old as a special needs child by Randy and Rita Rippee, managers and house parents of this Forever Home. Elise is home- schooled and really loves music, cooking, arts and crafts, and enjoys being the big, older sister to the Forever Home girls.
Shawna was adopted at the age of 1 year old as a special needs child by Randy and Rita Rippee, managers and house parents of this Forever Home. Shawna is home-schooled and is good at piano, arts and crafts, and thoroughly enjoys playing with the Forever Home girls.
Elizabeth was adopted at the age of 10 years old as a special needs child by Randy and Rita Rippee, managers and house parents of this Forever Home. Elizabeth is home-schooled and loves the outdoors, computers, bike riding, and crafts.
THE FOREVER HOME GIRLS
Click on the pictures below to find out more about our Forever Home girls.
We provide this information to give our sponsors and supporters a general idea of the challenges our children face. For prospective adoptive parents, the information on the blog is not intended to be a substitute for a complete and up-to-date referral packet from your adoption agency. Please keep in mind that in our blog posts, we always try to focus on a child's strengths, accomplishments and positive developments, not in an attempt to gloss-over their often serious medical conditions, but in an effort to share a glimpse of their precious personalities.