We’re David and Lois McBeath. We live in Point Pleasant, WV – a small town along the Ohio River on the western side of the state. We have 2 sons. Austin is 15. He’s a sophomore at Pt. Pleasant High School. Darrell is almost 12. He’s in the 6th grade at Roosevelt Elementary.
We actually began our adoption journey more than 10 years ago. I saw an ad in the newspaper about Chinese babies. We called about it, but it just wasn’t even feasible at that time in our life. All these years, it was always there, stuck somewhere in the back of our minds. I don't know why exactly – it just was. The thought never completely went away.
We also talked off and on about having another child. Our house was only 3 bedrooms, and we know the boys could have been in a room together, but we didn't want to do that if we didn't have to. In the spring of 2006, for some reason (I don't recall exactly what) - it came up again. We started thinking and talking - why not? So we started checking into it more. We did a lot of research online. The more we found out, the more we felt a calling, a desire and even a need to do this.
We started the adoption and added onto the house all at the same time. It took about 6 months to get the paperwork together. Then about another month after we sent it to China for them to translate it and 'log us in' (11/6/06). That's when we started to officially wait.
We finally got "THE CALL" on 7/13/08. It was a Sunday afternoon! After 2 ½ years, we are finally going to get our baby!
Leila Ann McBeath, formally known as Shun Xi Yi, was born on Oct 29, 2007. She had a cleft lip and cleft palate. The lip has been repaired, but not the palate. (We'll have to do that when we get her home.) She's in the Children's Welfare Institute of Shunde District of Foshan City, which is located in the Guangdong Province, in the southern part of China.

Shunde, the hometown of flowers, is one of four cities under the jurisdiction of Foshan City. Covering an area of 806 sq meters and with a population of 1.05 million, Shunde City is situated in the middle of the fertile Pearl River Delta, between Guangzhou and Hong Kong. It was set up as a county in the 3rd year (1452 AD) of the Jintai reign of the Ming Dynasy (1368-1644), and conferred with the administrative status of a city in 1992 by the State Council.

Foshan City is also where the actor Bruce Lee was from.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Summer 2017

Leila and I started a 'summer bucket list' this year.

It's just something to help remind us to get up, get going, and go out and do things.
We don't have it finished - we won't get it finished.
But it's been fun trying, and it's been nice marking things off as we go.

One of the first things on the list we did - was go to the zoo.
We went to the Columbus Zoo with some friends one day in early June.
We didn't see everything, but we tried.
We did feed a giraffe though. (What a long, long tongue!)

Austin turned 24, and Casey turned 23 in July.
It seems hard to believe that my baby can be 24 years old!

Soon after school was out for the year, we left for our annual 'girls trip'.
I was even more excited than normal this time.
I had made each of the 'girls' a scrapbook with pictures from all of our previous trips (this makes #7).
I could not wait to give it to them!
This year we went somewhere totally new too. None of us had ever been there. Atlantic City, NJ!
We always have so much fun, and this year was no different.
In addition to going to the beach almost every day, we went on a dolphin and whale watching tour, to an alpaca farm, to a colonial village, to see Lucy the Elephant (a national landmark), and explored the neighboring cities of Cape May and Ocean City.
We checked out the boardwalk, did LOTS of shopping and detoured into Philadelphia to see the Liberty Bell on the way home.

A week after getting home from vacation, we went to TN for the weekend.
We took Mom down so she could spend a week with my brother's family.
We always have a nice time there - Darres and Juanita are wonderful hosts.
They have another new house (surprise, surprise) - and I think, this one is my favorite so far.

July was still busy, but not nearly like June - not as much travel.
Although, we did go see the outdoor drama, Tecumseh, one night in Chillicothe.

Leila and I were still working on our bucket list.

Our 'big' event for July was Leila's surgery.
She had a bone graft done. They took bone from her hip and put it into her gum line.
She did amazing!
We were expecting to be at the hospital for 3-5 days.
Nope - one night.
She was supposed to be on a 'liquid / soft food' diet for almost a week.
Nope - she was eating after a couple of days.
The worst part was keeping her activity level down.
Once she started feeling better - she wanted to go.
Of course, her hip would hurt later, but that didn't stop her at the time.
When we got home from the hospital, our church family had collected a get well / gift basket for her.
They filled it with things to keep her busy while she recuperated.
How wonderful to be loved like that!

The Craig reunion, Bible school and a trip to the Blenko glass factory rounded out July for us.

Spring 2017

Leila finished her 1st year doing competitive cheer with GC Starz.
She was on the 'Mini' team.
There were a few ups and downs, but overall, she really enjoyed it.

Most of their competitions were in OH, but their final one for the season took us to Hershey, PA.
They had a great performance, but they didn't place as well as they wanted. They were a little disappointed, but it was okay, and they'll be better for it.
All of our 'big kids' arranged their schedules and went with us that weekend, so we had a little mini vacation.
We got to go to Hershey World and Hershey Park.

I had some super chocolate.

And David, Leila and I made a short side trip on the way home to York, PA so David could tour the Harley Factory.

I'm grateful for times like this.

In Feb, David and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary.
We were (really) surprised by a party at the church with family and friends.

The love and work that went into planning and pulling this off for us was wonderful.
And then to have so many people come and spend their evening with us, was amazing.
The last 25 years, have had a LOT of ups and downs, but we must be doing something right!
Here's to 25 more!

Easter is always nice.
We had beautiful weather.
We started with sunrise breakfast, church, and then dinner at home.

David FINALLY got his long awaited motorcycle in May.

The kids treated me to lunch at the Chinese restaurant for Mother's Day.
(They can be so sweet at times.)

Leila started biddy league volleyball.
She's the smallest one on the team (on all the teams actually).
She does pretty good hitting the ball, but serving is hard - that net is still a LONG way away.

Summer comes before we even realize it.
Leila has finished 3rd grade.
Darrell has finished his 2nd year of college.
Austin was hired on 'full-time' at Toyota.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

A New Year - 2017

School started. (And gosh - it's now 1/2 over!)
Leila is in the 3rd grade.
She struggles with some of the work, but overall - she's doing SO much better than she was last year.

Darrell started his 2nd year at Marshall.
He's in an apartment this year with 3 other guys instead of in the dorm - which he likes better.
He has a full load of classes, AND he works 2 part-time jobs.
He still works at the rec center on campus, and he also works at the bank now.
He has a lot on his plate, but he seems to be handling it.

Austin and Casey decided to expand their family with a new dog.
They got a Bernese Mountain dog named Marshall.
He's a cutie, but he has LOTS of energy.
(Makes me realize just how 'done' I am with the puppy stage.)

We celebrated our 8th (!) Gotcha Day in Sept.
Can't believe we've been home with our girl for that long.
We went out for our annual dinner at the Chinese restaurant.
I'm so grateful our 'big kids' make the time in their busy schedules for things like this.

The end of Oct brought birthdays.
Leila turned 9, and Darrell turned 20.
We had a 'joint' birthday party at the skating rink.
We had 'kids' of all ages - which was a lot of fun.
I grew up going to the skating rink as a teenager, but the boys did not. I must admit, that I loved being better at something physical than them, for the 1st time since they learned to walk!

Darrell went on a Veterans Day hike in the mountains of NC in Nov.
This was a fundraiser for an organization called standwatch.org.
They raise money for medical care for veterans.
He said it was one of the hardest things (physically) that he's ever done.
They backpacked across mountains overnight in freezing weather.
I'm so proud of him for putting others ahead of his own comfort and well-being though.

Dec was full of ups and downs.

Mom lost her dog and constant shadow, Freckles.

One week later, we lost David's 'baby' - Sable. She was just a few weeks shy of 13 years old.

Christmas was the usual rush and flurry of activities.
Leila was in a parade with her cheer group.
We went to the Chinese Lantern Festival in Columbus - really amazing, btw.
School program, church decorating, and program.

School Christmas Program

Leila's letter to Santa.
Don't you just absolutely love it?
And yes, Allie did get something from Santa too.

Christmas Eve Cookies for Santa

Christmas Morning

Austin MADE me this picture.
Isn't it pretty!?

Ready for Church

Leila had an expander put in her mouth in Dec.
This is in preparation for her bone graft surgery and for braces - both of which, I believe, will possibly be next summer.
She has actually done way better with this than I expected her to.

We had our New Year's Eve party.
Good food, good times, and good friends.
Always a great way to end the old year and start the new one.

Competition season has started for Leila's cheer group.
This is a new thing for us.
So far, Leila is loving it.
Of course, the fact that they won first place at their first meet probably has something to do with that too.

Now we're in the middle of winter - which hasn't actually been that cold or snowy (yet).
The school year is more than 1/2 over, and spring is just around the corner.