Last week the girls got all dressed up and we took them to a function that New Day was having. It isn't real often they have the opportunity to get all dressed up so they were excited. They really enjoy getting all dolled up, what girl doesn't?!
Last night, the English school of New Day hosted a "New Day's Got Talent." The Forever Home girls got to perform, and WHAT A PERFORMANCE!! They looked like professionals! Especially Serena! She introduced herself and all the girls, then announced what they'd be performing. I was amazed as she had very little coaching. They'd practiced their song all week, but never the intro to my knowledge. Of course, I'm sure she's seen it a hundred times on special programs on TV, but I was amazed at how natural she looked doing it! Perhaps she has a future there?! We already know how much she loves to sing and are working on perhaps getting her some piano and voice lessons to help with that passion she seems to have for music. All we need is a coach and/or music teacher. Perhaps we can find one to do both. You can keep that lifted up.
Anyway, the plan was that Serena and Elizabeth was to sing the song, with Jenna and Hannah doing actions. Although they'd practiced all week, with Shawna and Elise as their coaches, and it was ohhhh soooo cute, it didn't go quite according to plan!! Apparently, when the actual performance time came, stage fright set in on 3 of the 4. Elizabeth, who normally isn't shy in the least, hardly sang and wanted nothing to do with the mic. Jenna and Hannah performed no actions, but instead stared at all the people!! Regardless, I was one proud momma!!! I still thought they looked ohhh sooo cute and did a terrific job! Job well done girls!!
Jenna wants to ride a bigger bike like the big girls, but....she's a little short for that just yet. So, she hitches a ride with big sister, Shawna, which makes her feel special. It won't be long, Jenna, before you are ridin' with the big girls!
One of a kids favorite past-times is making a fort or house out of blankets! Oh, how I remember what fun we used to have doing that! We could spend hours in our own little world inside our own private fort!! Recently I caught the girls doing one in the front room and couldn't resist taking a picture!!
I had to surprise them with a little peek inside...and, of course, take a picture or two! They were clearly surprised and delighted when I peeked in! The looks on their faces tell it all!!
You know, there is nothing more beautiful than hand made items! This week, a small team from New Zealand came to help at New Day. They brought with them many hand crocheted and knitted items for all the kids. Such beautiful and thoughtful gifts! They made scarves, gloves, ponchos, baby blankets, and I'm not sure what else---all I know is they were greatly appreciated with the cold weather coming up. Thanks guys so much for all the love and work that went into these beautiful items!!
What do you do when you are tired of not being able to catch the noodle lady open? Why, you buy a pasta maker and make your own!! After 2 years of only being able to buy noodles in the morning hours, I finally got fed up. The morning hours are a busy time for us and I have trouble getting there to catch her open. Not only that, it is a very busy time in the village and another reason we try to avoid going through during that time. My husband, Randy, simply refuses to go there during "rush hour" times unless absolutely necessary! It's hard to imagine, I know. Rush hour traffic in a small village like ours?! Believe it or not, yes!! It's typically when cars or larger trucks try to come through and clog up everything. Then you have carts, bicycles, motorcycles and people honking and yelling! Then you have someone who taps you on the shoulder asking you to move a little so they can get on through, when you do another asks to you move a little this way and that way, before long it suddenly becomes the foreigner's fault the traffic is so backed up!! It's all quite frustrating and that's why my husband avoids it at all costs! It's enough to drive even the most patient person crazy!! Anyway, we thought for about $10 we'd just buy our own pasta maker and make our own, avoid the headache of it all! Besides, only once have I been able to special order the egg roll wraps. Since then they wouldn't do it and insisted I buy what they had already made even though all they have is the small round ones. Yet another reason to get it! At least this way, it will be much easier to make our own egg roll wraps too.
The lady who sold me the machine was sure to point out the directions on the box for me to follow. Of course, they were in Chinese....which was way helpful...NOT!! I just politely said, "OK, thank you." No worries, though, I had the exact same type of pasta maker in the states before we moved here. There's really nothing to it.
All the girls wanted to try out the new contraption! Each got their own turns. Although a couple of the girls couldn't seem to keep turning it the same way all the time:) They'd turn it this way, then the other only to find it just didn't work very well that way! They had fun anyway. I think they commented at dinner that it was the best noodles they'd ever eaten!! Of course, you know it's always better if you make it yourself!
What?!! Those kids are eatin' caviar?!! Well, let me explain. We certainly aren't accustomed to eating caviar at our house. In fact, I couldn't even remember the last time we'd had such a thing! It had probably been years and likely at one of Randy's work parties or events. So where did we get caviar in our little village here? One of New Day's directors went on a trip recently and brought some back for the foster home staff. Since only 2 of us even liked it, we split it up and brought some home, wanting the Forever Home girls to have a try. We thought it a great time for the girls to try a special treat. After-all, it isn't every day we get to eat caviar around here! The girls were all excited!! That is except Shawna, who hates any type of fish or seafood. She steered completely clear of any fish egg tasting! The other girls were happy to give it a try though! They all gathered round and excitedly spread some on their crackers...then giving it a taste, all had different reactions as you can clearly see from the pictures.
Elizabeth and Hannah are excited about trying something new! Especially something mom and dad says is great!
Jenna thinks, "Hey, I thought you said it was something good!" She clearly didn't like it much!
Although she thought she'd give it one more try.....just to be sure! Nope, still bad and she tries to shove the cracker towards me!! In the end, none of the girls cared much for these lovely fish eggs that mom and dad thought were so wonderful! I guess you never know until you try it. Now they can say they've tried it and don't like it. However, I think they should definitely try it again when they're older. I know some things I didn't like as a child, now appeals to me as an adult.
We are so proud to tell you that Serena has learned to ride a bike!! We wanted to share it with all of you. While it took a bit of doing due to her poor balance issues, she now is able to ride without training wheels. With the past week being a holiday, it provided the extra time she needed to practice her balancing skills. She is quite adamant about practicing all she can and hasn't given up easily. Now, all she needs to do is learn to use the brakes! She just runs into something or crashes before stopping. Randy has been trying to teach her about using the brakes. At one point, she got a bit confused and would press them just as soon as she began to ride only to bring her to an immediate stop. After more explanation, she is beginning to realize that you only press them later when you want to stop. Serena thought this video of her crashing her bike into the bushes was simply hilarious!! Every time she watches it, she laughs hysterically! How many of you remember when you learned to ride a bike and some of these same type of accidents you incurred before getting much better at it?!! I know I sure do!
Although we are not in the practice of letting our girls play with and pet just any dog or cat here, we were outside one day when a neighbor came along with their dog. She allowed Jenna to take him for a short walk and Jenna was THRILLED with the privilege!!
Elise and Shawna make rip stickin' look so easy, all the girls want to try it!! It isn't nearly as easy as it looks, if you don't believe me, just try it sometime! Just be careful or you'll end up on your rear before you know it!! They all want to try it, but quickly realize there's a lot more to it. Once we get the hang of the bicycles and roller blades, then they can learn this much easier. It's fun to try in the meantime anyway! It'll be no time before they are all rip stickin' it all over the place!! You go girls!!
With fall now upon us, we've taken to the outdoors a lot more these days. We're all enjoying the nice weather and, as always, the girls especially love being outside. Since it is also a week-long holiday here, we've had a lot of extra time to enjoy the great outdoors!
Big sister, Elise, spends a bit of time and energy giving rides on the back of her bike.
Better hang on Serena!!
Time to pose for a picture everyone!!
After one particular time when she'd already given many rides, I surprised her by jumping on the back myself saying "My turn!!" She said, "Aaah come on!" We all had a good laugh anyway!
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.