Oyler children

Oyler children
...He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ. Phil 1:6

Thursday, November 27, 2014

So Blessed!

This Thanksgiving Day I feel especially blessed! Blessed to have a wonderful Father who truly cares about every detail of my life....blessed to be at home with my family....blessed to have such a dear and loving husband....blessed by five wonderful children....blessed to have our newest son home with us from China....blessed by many, many dear family and friends....blessed by a year in which God has shown Himself to me like never before! Last night I was reminded that true thankfulness begins at the cross with being thankful for what Jesus did for me!

Each day it feels like Kian is just a little more settled in! I am truly amazed at how quickly and smoothly he has joined into our family and has became a part of us! He is realizing that he can trust us to meet his needs, yet he can not control us and our "no" really does mean "no"! He basks in the love and attention that the six of us lavish on him! But he is learning to appreciate time on his own doing his own thing. We love to see the delight on his face as he experiences something new....and we wonder how many of the things that we take for granted are "first times" for him and we don't even realize it. We are blessed by the joy and delight we experience each day through our five year old!!

Blessed by three wonderful sons!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The First Week Home

It is hard to believe we have already been home a week. Wow! This week has gone much faster than the previous two!! Life is taking on a new normal here in the Oyler household. We are adjusting to having a five year old again, and the five year old is doing a really good job of adjusting to us!! Kian sleeps all night every night in his bed in the room shared with his brothers. He reluctantly takes good naps. He eats pretty much anything we put in front of him....but we have noticed he really enjoys the meals we have rice!! His siblings love him dearly and he adores his siblings!! I didn't know how Monday morning would go after a weekend where most attention was devoted to him, but he did fairly well. He is somewhat of a distraction to the other children doing school, but we are working on that! We all love Kian's contagious laughter and hugs. He is such a sweetheart. To our amazement we have discovered that he can sing the ABC song. He can say his numbers up to 10 and recognizes many colors. He will copy anything we say so language development is already in progress. Our favorite thing is when he is playing and starts singing "Jesus Loves Me"  Just melts our hearts!!

 He got a carpet burn on his nose the second day home!

Male bonding! Craig was wrestling with the Jadrian and Preston....Kian was not going to be left out! 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Fri 11/14 - Home Sweet Home

We are praising the Lord! To be home again....a family of seven....together!! Today was probably the longest day of my life! Literally we lived Friday for about 35 hours with all the time changes....physically it was absolutely exhausting....emotionally it seemed forever until we finally got off the last plane and were welcomed home by our dear family and friends. And now we are praising Him to be home and together again. I know without a doubt that it was the hundreds, even thousands of prayers that ascended to the Father on our behalf that were answered and allowed our trip to go so smoothly. So thank you to each of you who petitioned Him on our behalf!!! May the Lord bless you!!! The Lord put us on this journey to bring little Kian home and He has been faithful EVERY step of the way. He has grown and stretched our faith through this like never before! And even though it has been painful at times, we are thankful!!

Waiting for his first plane ride!!

In the air at last.

We were blessed by our family and friends who were at the airport when we arrived! For Craig and I, it was such a time of joy and relief to be with those we love again. From little Kian's perspective...well I can't imagine how overwhelming it must have been to see so many faces looking right at him. Some of the faces were familiar from pictures we had showed him in preparing him for homecoming, but I am sure it was still very overwhelming. He did very well...was quiet (and not so smiley) at first, but came alive as he started batting balloons around with the other children.

And now we begin a new phase in this journey....teaching Kian about Jesus...sharing the love of a family with him....loving him even in the unlovable moments. In many ways the next few months look daunting, yet we have the confidence that He who has begun a good work in us will complete it. So we will rest in Him, knowing He will guide us through every step of the journey ahead!!

An exhausted mama and Kian who fell asleep over supper!

Again we want to thank each of you who have supported us and followed along with us on our trip! We were so blessed by the blog comments and messages we received! This is the final post of our trip. For those of you who want to know how Kian is adjusting, I plan to do an occasional post in the future. We love each of you!!

Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
Psalm 46:10

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Thur 11/13 - Packing to Travel Home

The Packing our bags to travel home was the only thing planned for today. How do you help a five year old understand that yes we are going to get on an airplane and go home but not for several hours yet. Multiple times he has put his backpack on and spread his arms like he is flying. He has the concept that we are going to get on a plane....but doesn't understand that we are not leaving for several hours yet. So please pray for patience for each of us on these last couple of days of our journey to bring our dear son home. We leave our hotel at 9:30 pm and arrive in Indy on Friday afternoon.

A not-so-happy boy putting his backpack on.....again. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Wed 11/12 - American Consulate Appointment

Each morning we have eaten breakfast here at our hotel. The breakfast buffet is huge with everything from traditional American breakfast foods to a variety of Asian dishes. The food has been delicious!! Well, this morning I noticed a dish labeled "Chicken Feet ".  Will Jenkins had shared with us after one of his trips to Chna that he had been served chicken feet and we had sort of grossed out. So I joked with Craig that he should try some. And at his next trip to the buffet he came back with...chicken feet. Kian lit up when he saw them and motioned that he wanted some! Craig cautiously tasted them and then gladly relinquished them to Kian. It was definitely not Kian's first time to eat chicken feet. He chomped into them like he knew what he was doing!! This mama cringed at what he was eating but I figure he has survived eating them before and probably will this time too. So far we have seen no ill effects!!:)

                  Chicken feet top right

         Kian enjoying them immensely 

Today was our last official appointment before leaving Chna. We went to the American Consulate to apply for Kian's visa. We have waited here for days for this appointment which only took a few minutes, but we couldn't leave without it!!

   Masses of people outside the Consulate 

After nearly two weeks here, tonight we get to spend our last night at the Garden Hotel. We have had luxurious accommodations, but we are so ready to return home. We are missing our children and looking forward to all being together as a family of seven!!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Tues 11/11 - The Zoo

This morning we spent a couple of hours at the zoo. It didn't quite measure up to Indy Zoo but then neither did the price. It cost 20 yuan per adult which is about $3.50 each! Kian was not very interested in the animals. He actually had more fun playing with the balloon he got at the entrance. One of highlights was hearing the lions roar...I mean really roar!!! Kian was excited to see the pandas like his new stuffed panda but to our disappointment they were in a glass building and we could hardly see them. It ended up raining some but we enjoyed the outing. 


       Panda house...a disappointment 

     Kian's umbrella when it rained 

It has been so exciting to see Kian get more comfortable with us each day! He is chewing on his fingers less and chattering more when we go out. He walked around the zoo much of the time on his own where as a couple of days ago he wanted to be held all the time....Craig's poor back and arms!! It is so exciting to hear him calling out "Baba" and "Mama" to get our attention. We feel so blessed by how well he is adjusting!! And yes he does have us wrapped around his little finger...but we know that being firm is important and so we have lots we are working on. 

This afternoon we spent a couple of hours walking the streets behind the hotel. It is a city of contrasts. Expensive stores on one side with dilapidated apartments 8-10 stories high on the other side of the street. Little shops selling everything everywhere. We are glad we get to experience some of our son's culture. 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Mon 11/10 - Shamian Island & Boat Cruise

We have been blessed by a lovely day! Our guide took a group of us adoptive families to Shamian Island. It is not really an island but an area with water on one side. Old tall buildings line the cobble stone streets with small shops to poke around in.  Mostly we enjoyed the quietness of the area....sort of separated from the hustle & bustle of the city. We strolled through the park and enjoyed lunch at Lucy's before returning to our hotel. 
                    Shamian Island

Kian was pretty excited about his new panda!! But then gave it to me to sleep with at nap time!?!?

Tonight we took a boat cruise along the river. It was beautiful! The shore line was lit up and many of the skyscrapers had spectacular light displays! Pics don't do it justice but we will share a few!!

                       My favorite 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sun 11/9 - Visited the Chen Clan Academy and the Pearl Market

This morning we went with a group of other adoptive families to the Chen Clan Academy. It is a sort of temple that the most important family in Guangzhou built for family gatherings and as a place for the family to worship. Later it became a place for family to come and study for tests similiar to our SAT tests. Kian was not impressed and ready to move on after just a few minutes! We enjoyed the architecture! Next we stopped at the Pearl Market where pearls could be purchased for a reasonable price. We enjoyed getting out of our hotel and chatting with other families the most!!!


                 Chen Clan Academy

      Gardens behind the academy

                   Pearl Market

               Pearl market mall


              Our guide, Kelly