Birthday Pictures & Wonderful Update!!

This Thanksgiving and Christmas season brings new joy for our family.  We feel honored and blessed to have had this precious little girl chosen for our family…..

We thank you God and Father that you loved her long before we saw her face, and lovingly prepared our hearts to be knit together with her….

Elyana cake

Happy 2nd Birthday Elyana!!!

It’s by your grace and mercy you’ve kept her, and all these sweet orphans in your loving hands……


(We had to crop Elyana’s little friends out of the picture, to protect their privacy)

By your hands we are fed, loved, and made yours…’s by nothing we ourselves have done…but you’ve chosen and predestined each of us…”Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will” Ephesians 1:5


~our daughter…..Elyana Leigh YiXuan Sparks~

This is most likely the last update, before we hold you in our arms sweet one….

“The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.” Jer. 31:3

We are so excited to not only get pictures of her with the cake we sent her, but also an update.  A very kind Chinese woman runs a business with an adoptive mom from the U.S. called   They work with adoptive families to send care packages and make orphanage calls.

She did an amazing job for us & called the orphanage to collect answers to 10 questions about Elyana.

Hi Cynthia,

I got the update!

  1. Who chose her name and why? Does her name have any special meaning? 

Her name was given by our dispensary staff. Yi Means happy. Xuan means hope she will be adaptable like Xuan Cao (day lily, tawny daylily). Xuan Cao is also called Wang You Cao (nepenthes. In Chinese it means forget about worries). We hope she will be happy every day and no worries in the future when she grows up. 

2. What food/drink do you feed her, and does she still take a bottle?

Staple food: rice, noodle, congee, and steamed buns.

Supplementary food: various of vegetable, pork jelly, chicken jelly.

Cool boiled water, various of juice, yoghurts.

9:30am a cup of milk and an egg.

3:30pm cake, vegetable rolls and meat rolls. 
3. Is she potty trained, or use diapers?

She is still using diaper. We are just training her now. 
4. What upsets her and what sooths her when she is upset?

She is happy when she gets therapy training, but sometimes she cries also.

When she is not happy, nanny will hold her, take her out and play, or take her to play games with other children, and she’ll be very happy again. 

5. Does she sleep alone and does she sleep through the night and go to sleep well?’

She sleeps in her own bed. she sleeps well and easily fall in sleep.

At night, nanny wakes her up to go potty one or two times.
6. What makes her happy, and what scares her?

Nanny hold her and play with her or take her play games with other children makes her happy. She will hide when she sees strangers. But after a while, she will come out of her shell.
7. Can she walk, or can she only walk while using a walker or pushing something?

She can walk using a walker.
8. Has she seen pictures of us in the photo album we sent? 

Her nannies showed the photo album to her and have been teaching her daddy, mommy, grandparents and siblings.
9. Is she attached to any specific caretaker or caretakers that work at the orphanage?

She is very close to the nannies who take care of her.
10. Has she been sick, or received medical treatment recently? 

Her overall healthy is pretty good, she seldom gets sick.

11. Her updated measurements:

Height:80cm; Weight: 11.5kg; Head:46cm; Chest: 52cm; Foot: 11.5cm.

Happy Thanksgiving!


  I figured up the U.S. measurements, and was excited to find she has gained a few lbs. since October.  Height:31.5″; Weight: 25lbs; Head:18″; Chest: 20.4″; Foot: Size 4 (4.5″)

We have heard such encouraging news from other parent’s and those who have gone on mission trips to her orphanage…that the nannies truly care for the children. We find comfort knowing she is cared for well, and pray these hands are blessed.

God is teaching me so much about not earning His blessings.  Having Elyana gifted to us, or being given these precious updates, or the good news of our TA…..couldn’t be earned in any way by anything good we could do or be.  She has simply been given, as a precious gift.

the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.” Rom 5:15b

And as the Christmas season is upon us, we begin it with joy! God sent His love in the form of one small child………Jesus.  “He became sin that knew no sin” and we are so grateful that he has given us this great gift of grace, and has poured his love into us….so we have love to give….

Elyana birthday


We are counting down the days until we see you face to face.  Your Daddy actually has a countdown app rolling on his phone that tells him the exact hours and minutes until our departure.  (I think he’s only a bit excited) You’ve touched our hearts in ways we never could’ve imagined.  God has truly shared his heart with us….and we are privileged to love you and be your family.  Take as much time as you need to get used to us, we won’t be going anywhere.  We will love you unconditionally…just as we have been loved.

We leave for China in 11 days, 14hrs, 2min!!!!

6 thoughts on “Birthday Pictures & Wonderful Update!!

  1. I am so in love with her sweet face…with just a hint of a smile in her eyes! It won’t be many more days before you get to love some giggles right into her heart and face! What a beautiful day that will be! Praying for you in the coming days! Hope the packing and prep is going smooth!
    Your Friend, Bridgett

    1. Hello again Bridgett!! Your messages always bring a smile to my face! It’s so funny you say her eyes are smiling…because though we’ve never had a picture with her smiling, we always say her eyes are. We always think she looks curious.
      Thank you again for making contact with our family. I know you understand all these wild feelings adoption brings. Thank you for all your encouragement and advice. It’s countdown now! 9 days to go until lift off! 🙂

  2. Beautiful!!! Always a blessing to see pictures of Elyana!! We continue to pray for you and this upcoming journey 1/2 way around the world to bring Elyana safely home. Love you all!!

    1. Hi Sarah! Thank you so much for all your prayers & love. We miss you guys. Hope your sweet girl is growing strong. Give those amazing kids of yours hugs from us! We love you!

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