Sweet Sixteen

Sweet Sixteen

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Yesterday my friend Jenn and I drove up to VA to have one last park date with Adeye and her children before they move across the country. (insert weeping and gnashing of teeth here-sniff sniff)

I met Adeye in blogland but have also been privileged to spend some face-to-face time with her and her family a few times over the past 2yrs.

Adeye and her husband Anthony have 7 children, 4 of whom are adopted.  Each adpoted child has her own unique story, but the one that has truly touched my heart is Hailee's. Any child who is forced to spend even one day in an orphanage can't be considered to have had a 'good start' in life, but there are some who have truly horrendous orphanage experiences and Hailee is one of those sweet babies.

She came home as a 5yr. old weighing only 15 1/2 pounds.  But what she lacked in size she made up for in spunk and an innate survival instinct.

Our first park get together was July of last year and all 3 girls just kind of hung out on the blanket together.  Even then it was evident that Hailee was going to make sure her younger sister knew who was the oldest even if she wasn't the biggest.

Yes, ma'am, this girl wasn't going to let someone with a few extra pounds push her around.

However, my (ahem) sweet daughter made sure that Hailee knew that she was definitely going to use her size to her advantage. 

In my sweet bully daughter's defense, she was probably just trying to hug Hailee.  I'm sure it had nothing to do with her trying to steal Hailee's drink or pull her hair or anything like that.

Ok, so there is some pictorial evidence to the contrary showing that Nadia doesn't always mean well, but I really think that even in this situation she was just showing Milana how much she adores her with a nice (albeit painful) "love squeeze".  
Ahh...but I digress. Back to Hailee my Hero!

  I was so excited to see her and her family yesterday and to see the wonderful progress she's made since our last visit.  I could tell she had gotten much stronger and still possessed that same spunk and survival instinct that has helped her get this far in life. 
 But I still wasn't prepared for sista to "bust-a-move" the way she did.  Thankfully, I caught it all with my camera in the following sequence of pictures.

It started out all pink and innocent and cute as Jenn broke out the crackers for the 4 little ones.

In fact it wasn't until I moved Harper up next to her sister that all "you know what" broke loose.
I can just hear Hailee's thoughts..."Oh no you don't, Harper, these crackers are mine!"

So, doing what any sister would do when faced with competition , Hailee pushed her down to leave her with only 2 opponents for the food.

Being next in the line of fire, Nadia gets a dose of  karma  with a good hair-pulling from Hailee.
(Notice Harper's unwillingness to jump in and help out--I'm totally cracking up at this point which I'm sure makes me a terrible mom but the irony of this scene was tickling my funny bone.)

What comes around goes around they say.

This really played out faster than it seems, and even amidst my laughter, I am just about ready to intervene...you believe me right?

Pinned!  You win Hailee.   You can have Nadia's crackers.

"Oh no she did not just reach her hand out for MY share of the crackers."
(Bad move Milana....Really. Bad. Move.)

Told ya.

Hailee is the full package. She's as sweet and cuddly and pretty in pink as she can be...

...and tough as nails when needed. She had to be or she wouldn't be here today.  I thank God that he gave this girl the fighting spirit that she has and that he moved in the lives of  Adeye and Anthony to bring this little one into their family where she can truly reach her full, God-given potential!

(Post Disclaimer: No children were harmed in this photo shoot and no sticks were ingested...just some leaves and grass by Nadia...as usual...)


  1. I love it! Thank you so much for taking us with you. It was so wonderful to meet the Adeye and those 7 amazing children.

    I have to say I was laughing out loud at your post. For the record I just sat there laughing and snapping pictures when it all broke loose.
    It was too cute to sto!

    I had forgotten Milana got a whoopin' from Hailee. I told you before...karma :)

  2. Great pics my dear friend! I wrote a long comment and it would not post :) but so enjoyed seeing these girls! You, Jenn and Adeye are such an encouragement to my heart! I love the way you have championed the cause of these little loves and show us the way to bring laughter to heart of our Lord! YOU GO GIRL!

  3. Wonderful pictures! You captured a funny moment :) I still recall following Adeye's journey to get sweet Hailee and just praying on my knees that she would even survive the horrible conditions she had to endure before Adeye was able to save her! God's love prevails and we all need to trust in Him!

  4. HAHAHAAHAHAHAHA oh mann.. all i can say is Nadia got what was coming to her!! maybe thats why she doesnt pull my hair as much anymore.. now she knows what it feels like(: haha thank you hailee! (:

  5. oh my word, that was funny! and I love that you photographed the whole thing for posterity (and laughter's) sake!! Great momma :)

  6. That is the funniest thing that I have ever seen...and Nadia's cry face is my Cole's exact.cry.face. Cracks me up every single time.

  7. I actually laughed out loud on the last photo!!! Smiling ear to ear all the way through. What a blessing and a good time!

  8. This is hilarious!!

    They are darling, love it!!

  9. Hah! Love this!!! Cute pictures!!!

  10. What a hoot!! So glad you were able to spend another day together. I'm so bummed I never got to join you guys in one of your "Adeye days" and meet our bloggy friend.

    Sigh.... Someday.....

  11. Love the header photo. Amazing what time with a family can do for any child. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. I am truly blessed to be on this amazing journey with you.

  12. Very funny recap, Kristen.
    Hate we missed all the fun and the wrestling match.

  13. This is a HILARIOUS set of photos!!! Oh my goodness! I realize as a parent set on training our children in good manners and such,we should probably be appalled at those scrappy girls, but with a crew that cute . . . there is NO WAY anyone could do anything but laugh and take pics (which you did!). Precious, precious blog post and I needed a smile this evening . . .thanks for sharing!

  14. A video of this would be totally awesome !!