the incubator arrived and we went on a trip


The incubator you all purchased last month arrived to the orphanage!!!

(incubator project post here, update project post here)

Love Without Boundaries received a photo this week. The incubator is equipped to care for vulnerable babies and those with jaundice. It is also a sterile, safe environment for the youngest babies. Can you believe how cute that well bundled little one is? I so wish he or she could be snuggled in my arms!

Well, not much is happening regarding our adoption. We are on day 77 of our wait for our approval letter. I’ve seen others get it in under 20 days and still seen others wait 120 days. There isn’t much sense to be made regarding the wait times. When we began the wait at the first of March, I was just sure we’d never reach May and still be waiting. But, we are.

Jumping when the phone rings, hoping it will be my agency is getting old. I’m weary of the waiting. This too shall pass.

Our youngest daughter will need some surgeries over the course of time, so we’ve been trying to make preparations for that. I’ll share more on it later, but now I’m not ready to post it on such a public forum. Anyway, we drove 4.5 hours out of state to meet with a surgeon. In preparing for that meeting here is what I learned:

  1. Every time I call the doctor’s office they ask my child’s name and I get to tell them. I love saying her name.
  2. I am grateful for health insurance, but it sure is frustrating when you have to deal with red tape. Chris is extremely attractive when he is passionately advocating for his daughter on the phone with our insurance company.
  3. Medical forms are bittersweet. I get to write my name in the “Mother” section – sweet! All the spots related to pregnancy, birth and medical history have to be left blank. Those blank spots are hard.


It just so happens IKEA is directly on the way from my house to the doctor’s office. We stopped by for a little shopping. The boys stayed home with family, but our little road warrior tagged along with us.

We bought her little sister a high chair and stacking cups. So far I’ve never had much success with my kids liking stacking cups. However, several adoptive moms suggested I bring some along when we travel…so we shall see if Little One likes them.

FireCracker went nuts over the ‘pink room’. She crawled right up in the bed and got under the covers…later she passed out in her daddy’s arms.

Waiting to see the doctor. I was both nervous and excited. It was a good visit. He’s a great doctor, but my favorite part was hearing him say her name and calling me her mom. I think I might call the office everyday just so they can ask me, “What is your child’s name?” and I can respond. Good times. Good times. (For the record, Chris is not on his phone all the time…he was dealing with insurance all day)

And a fast dinner before the long drive home.

It was nice to feel like we were doing something for our youngest daughter, but at the end of the day we were still waiting for a phone call.

Day 77.

“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” ~Proverbs 13:12

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  • Amy - So many miles apart, not knowing each other personally, such similar stories of longing , waiting, hope… Some day soon you’ll have that little girl in your arms, and I can’t wait to celebrate along side of you and your family. And someday, years from now, you’ll be able to look back at this time, and see that it was all worth it. In the meantime, I’ll continue to pray for you and your daughter.

  • cassie - Goodness! As soon as I read the title I thought you had gotten the letter and already been to get her…. like you had been holding out on us. Hopefully if gives you some encouragement to know many of us are waiting with excitement right along with you!

  • Kimberly Troth - Praying to hear something SOON!!! And your family will be ALL together πŸ™‚ FireCracker is just too cute!!

  • Sue Symens - Praying, praying, praying for your family. God loves you this will happen soon!

  • Lori - I rejoice when you rejoice – I cry when you cry. No words… and it will come to pass.

  • Eva - I do hope and pray you hear something soon. You have waited so long already. We are still paperchasing for our third blessing from China and will be DTC some time this summer.

  • Seriously Sassy Mama - Surgery is stressful, especially for a sweet little one who is not here yet. Praying for a letter!

  • Lisa Box - praying you get your letter SOON. thanks for sharing this journey with all of us, Ashley–i’m learning so much from you about motherhood.

  • Jennifer - I had a friend adopt from Asia 11 years ago. Every day was torture waiting for word. The days when her sweet baby boy were in her arms were blissful and the pain of waiting almost forgotten.


  • Laura J. - You need to be yelling. Not that it will do anything, but it will make you feel better. (Insert your daughter’s name here) COME HOME THIS INSTANT!!! Best not to do it when others are home, as they will look at you oddly. You have to be as loud as you can. Not sure if it really helps, but it would stop my heartache for a good second. Wait a couple years & see what happens when you are filling out health forms. I can remember doing that for my daughter and very seriously considering the questions-then laughing at myself for forgetting I didn’t give birth to her and writing Not Available in that section.

  • Lacy - My twin boys love those Ikea stacking cups. You made a great choice and I hope your youngest daughter loves them too!

  • mandi@herbanhomestead - Thank you for sharing that scripture. I will take that on as our adoption verse as well. Goodness, God’s timing can be both hard and wonderful, can’t it? {{{hugs}}}

  • Jessica - James 1: 2-4, my friend. This trial is doing a good work in you.

  • VΓ©nusia - Thanks again for sharing. I so understand. I had a molar pregnancy last year. And now I’m waiting for my doctor approval to get pregnant again… Waiting is hard ! But your waiting his harder than mine.

    I always tough about adopting and now that you share about your journey and the pain and joy, it helps me prepare and think seriously about it. It is a story to follow in the years to come ! But you’ll be a part of it !

    By the way, I looked for the verse in French, just to understand it better for me, and it is Proverb 13.12 and not Psalm 13.12. So you can correct it !

    Have a nice weekend !

  • Laura @Ms Smartie Pants - Once again you open my eyes to just how much I take for granted. That little incubator and baby gave me goose bumps, how totally cool! Praying and waiting with you!

  • susan leah - amazing! we’ll wait with you…

  • Rachel B. - Praying, praying, praying! Faithful is He who has called you and He has called you can’t fail!
    So excited for your journey!

  • Kara M - Oh, I smiled with tears in my eyes! Her name!!! Josh and I started talking about names on our date this week. We are so far from the point of naming, but it was fun just to think about it.

  • Natalie @ TheShadyAcre - I can’t imagine how hard the waiting must be. I’m praying it will go as quickly as possible, and that you will have peace and patience in the meantime!

  • Tammia - I know…I had the same thought: stacking cups? really?
    But yes. Big-time hit, easy to pack, simple pleasure.
    Hugs for the waiting and hugs for upcoming surgeries.

  • AshleyAnn - Thanks Vensuia!

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - Just wanted to tell you to have a wonderful weekend! Thank you for sharing what amazing and beautiful things God is doing in the Love without Boundaries project.

  • Cassandra - I’m hoping and praying you get amazing news soon about your little girl. My daughter had cranioplasty surgery when she was 7 months old. It’s hard seeing your child go through that but having great doctors makes it a little easier. I wish you and your family the best and thank you for sharing your story.

  • Julie B - I can’t imagine how hard it is to wait. I’m sorry to hear that she will have to have surgeries when she is home but I know she is with the most loving parents. What a joy to know you can be there for her and that you will get to help her recover! Hugs to you and your family.

  • Andrea L. - Psalm 73:26
    My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

    Praying that God will be the strength you need as you wait. Stay strong! Eyes on the prize!

  • RachelSd - Thinking and hoping and praying and wishing for you…

  • KO - It must have felt so go to be doing “something” but that wait makes my heart ache for y’all. You had me in tears when you wrote about “blank spaces”. Im very thankful to be able to watch you and your sweet family navigate this process, what a blessing you are to so many. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

  • Suzanne - yay incubator! yay doctor appointments! yay ikea – my kids lay in the beds too πŸ™‚

  • Charly - Ashley, I usually do not comment…first time actually. But I read your blog on a daily basis. Ever since you started talking about adopting your daughter, I check it first thing in the morning to see if you have heard any news. I’m looking forward to hearing more about your addition to your family. Praying it all happens soon!

  • Danielle H. - You must have been in my neck of the woods in Texas! Ikea and In N’ Out Burger are the best!

  • Kelly - Loving that doll! Can you share where you got it?

  • Bethany - We have those high chairs at the daycare where I work. You will love using it with your daughter. (PS I love IKEA. The closest one to us is, well, in another country. :P)

    How much harder it must be to wait for that phone call than to wait through the last weeks of pregnancy. Though the anxiousness must be about the same. Soon. It will be soon.

  • Carrie - Thank you for the reminder of this verse – was such a heartfelt verse when our own little six month old went through emergency surgery six months ago. Blessings on your family – press on, for the joy set before you! Praying for your sick heart and anticipating your tree of life!

  • Trisha Jackson - Praying for your little one. Can’t wait to see pictures and hear about her.

    I just found out that I’m going to be an aunt and if I have a niece I love that little baby doll for her. Did you get the doll off of Etsy? Did you make it?

    Any info would be sooo appreciated!

    Take care and I love your blog!! My husband and I hope to adopt a baby from China one day.
    -Trisha Jackson

  • Kimberlee Jost - I’m going to sleep tonight praying.
    I am.

  • Kimberlee Jost - Which I just realized sounds dumb because you probably didn’t know that I am in Germany and it’s nearly 11:30 pm, so I am going to bed now. Praying for the little one with the sweet cheeks and her mama.

  • Heather - Awe I thought you had one to get your girl!! I was more excited than I expected when I saw that πŸ™‚ Sidenote IKEA is always a good time!

  • Leanne - Ashley – each night I say a prayer for the process to be faster for you. I believe that there is a reason God is making it this long, and I know that doesn’t help you in the meantime, but we are all thinking of you and hopefully you know that your pain is shared, and hopefully therefore halved.
    Leanne xo

  • Stefanie - That is a wait I know way too well… it’s not easy! Once that LOA arrives, though, it will be all downhill to TA and then TRAVEL!
    Hope that next week is THE WEEK for y’all πŸ™‚

  • Elizabeth Goold - This feels like a silly comment, but, when did you get In-n-Out in Oklahoma??? That’s a California favorite!!
    ….I’m continuing to pray for your sweet little angel.

  • Ashley T. - I’m beginning to feel your frustration on waiting for the letter. I’ll be off the computer for a few days get back on and check your blog sure that I will see a long post about how you finally got the letter. No such luck. My heart goes out to you and I’m praying you will be with Song soon. (:

  • Kara - I just love following your journey as you welcome your sweet daughter into your family. I can only imagine the agony of waiting, waiting to bring that little one home… I get impatient having to wait for much smaller, sillier things. This post resonated with me because my son was born with a congenital defect that has so far required two major surgeries. We’ve travelled out of state several times to different surgeons, battled insurance… I can’t say I’ve had the best attitude when dealing with all that! :/ I love your perspective even as you deal with those things… πŸ™‚ Praying that phone call comes soon!

  • Fliss - So glad to see the incubator… hugs