Friday, December 30, 2011

circa 1968

Walking down a short side street, we found a small door that opened to 3 chairs. 
A traditional barber shop had been open there since 1968. 
Of course the boys needed haircuts. Very nice people. 
Hilarious moment. 

Thursday, December 29, 2011


 We have some time on our hands...
so we found a street market in Wan Chai that sells knock-off Legos. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Hong Kong --- see you soon.

                                                  I love to travel with these people! 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Sunday afternoon, friends and family gathered at our church to honor the life of Noah Watchman Dean. We celebrated the hope we have in Christ and prayed for orphans worldwide. We released red balloons with prayers attached in Noah's memory. It was absolutely beautiful. 

We are so moved by the amount of support and love we have been shown. Thank you, thank you, thank you. For those who were unable to attend, here is some of the letter I read during the service:

Dear Noah, 

This has been the hardest week of my life. Losing you has caused indescribable grief in my heart. You never met me, but I have loved you from the moment I could call you mine. I still do. 

I remember the first night your pictures arrived. I was overwhelmed, humbled, and sure I wanted to be your father. I wasn't sure how I could care for your special needs, but I was certain I wanted to, and determined in my heart to do everything I possibly could, to love you well in this world -- just like my other sons. 

Facing the reality of your death has been heartbreaking. It still is. I miss you. I miss the memories we would have made, and in a better world, we should have made. In a perfect world, you would never have been abandoned. 
Forsaking you at birth would never happen. We do not live in a perfect world, but we are loved by a perfect Father who gave his son that those who believe, have LIFE in him. 

You are a precious, priceless person to me and I would have given everything I have to bring you home. Yet, this was not our Father's will. Instead, you would pass from this life to eternity... 

Father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling (Psalm 68:5). We trust you are in the Father's arms. Whole. Healed. Happy. Forever. 

Your life was not in vain.
Many people will see Jesus because of you.
They will hear about what you already know as reality.
They will believe in faith, what you now see as forever with God.

There are millions of precious people in the world, just like you. 

147 millions orphans worldwide. 
This is not right. 
Not acceptable.

The pain of losing you put us on our knees, put tears in our eyes, and opened our hands and hearts all the more to the God we know, trust, and love.

After praying about this and trying to reconcile losing you, your mom and I believe the best way to honor your life... to continue placing honor and worth on your life... is to welcome another child in your memory and in the name of Jesus. 

So we are doing that...* 

If there are trampolines in heaven, be prepared.You have three brothers that will tackle and hug you as soon as they see you. They love to wrestle. I do too.


* We have started the paperwork on a special little girl. More on her story when the time is appropriate and things are final. Anna Grace will have a sister! We can't wait to meet them both!!!!!!!!! 

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

When I awake, I am still with You.

For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. 
I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;Your works are wonderful. 
I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with You. 
Psalm 139:13-18

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Noah Watchman Dean

Dear Friends and Family,
With nine days left to go pick up this sweet little angel, we received a devastating call this afternoon. Our son, Noah Watchman Dean went to be with Jesus. We never got to hold our son, never got to cuddle, or squeeze his sweet cheeks. But he was totally part of our family. He was our 4th son. It was official, we signed the papers. We were his Mom and Dad.  He was Josh's "little squishy". The boys couldn't wait to wrestle with him. Luke was waiting to play "men" (little figures) with him. He has clothes, a highchair, a bed, a plane ticket, a bouncy seat, formula ready to go, and a family that was counting down the days to finally embrace our little fellow.

Whenever I look at his picture, more than anything I wanted to rescue him from that plastic mattress. So cold, and ugly. To think he has spent the last 15 months of his life there makes me cringe. I wanted to kiss the scar on his forehead because I know that no one ever did. I wanted to caress his little deformed ear like it was perfectly made in his mother's womb. I wanted to be his Mommy. Thankfully even though I will never be able to hold my son I will always be able to call him my son. I have the papers to prove it.
Yesterday on our Jesse Tree, the ornament we opened was of Noah's Ark. We looked at it with great anticipation thinking about our trip to get our Noah. Todays ornament was a Ram, symbolizing the story of Abraham and Isaac and that God would provide. Today we are trusting him for his provision. When I told Josh this he said, "Momma, I can't give Noah up." That's how we all feel right now. For my birthday Matt bought me a Christmas ornament that said "Everlasting Father" to commemorate our special Christmas this year. Little did I know that it will always remind me of who is holding our little one.
We will probably not receive any information about his death, we will not receive a death certificate, or know what will happen to his little body. All of this so hard to take in, so unsettling. Mainly, because his life was of great value to us. He is our son. Matt and I have talked,  that when we first heard of his special needs we were a bit overwhelmed and didn't know how we could handle them all. But as the days went by we were filled with peace that no matter how he came to us, he was ours and that we would do whatever we needed to do. Today, we would give anything, pay anything to have this baby in our home for just a second. You see, the worth of something depends on how much one is willing to pay. Caleb this afternoon said "I wish I could die, so that Noah could live." He was a valuable part of our family. Matt is without words, grieving and broken over this loss.  
We know, and we take great hope in our Everlasting Father. He has healed Noah's ear. He is hearing perfectly the sounds of heaven.  He is no longer hungry or malnourished. His little lip and palate are perfect. He is fully alive with the Father. He will never be cold again. He will never be alone, never be forsaken, never hurt alone again.
Thank you for praying for us. Pray for our family as we grieve. Pray for us as we leave next week to get Anna Grace. It's like having twins. We are excited and grieving at the same time. It feels like we are on a roller coaster.
We have friends that have endured this same loss, only from Ethiopia as they were preparing travel to pick up their son Brighton. They have been a great source of comfort to us. Tonight the dad said, "It makes me smile to think of a little Chinese boy named Noah and a little Ethiopian boy named Brighton running around heaven playing with each other."
The Lord has a special place in his heart for little ones like these -  
For all the Dean family,