A Glimpse Into a Partner Orphanage – Shaanxi, China: Part 2

Today we pick up again with more from our Storyteller Mission team trip to Shaanxi. If you missed yesterday’s post, be sure to check it out as well!

In today's post, Kelly shares about two more days of activities, including a special project to make weighted blankets for the orphanage. Weighted blankets are a wonderful tool for children with sensory integration needs. They are often used by occupational therapists (OTs) and recommended for kids with ADD/ADHD, sensory processing disorders, and autism spectrum disorders to help with calming. The weight is intended to provide proprioceptive input to the brain, which has a calming and organizing effect on the central nervous system.

Read more below about this project and why we tell their stories:

There are stories to tell. That’s why we’re here–to enter into their stories, share our stories, and tell their stories. That was clear today as we did a lot of this:

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and more of this:

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and more of me walking around with our translator by my side talking and talking with hot water always close by.

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All that and I still had enough energy left to play volleyball with a mini blow up beach ball with this boy who has captured my heart.

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There’s a boy who went to sleep tonight with pictures of his new Mama and Daddy by his bed. He heard his name for the first time today. I wonder if he knows how to spell it. (Note to self: teach Ian to spell Ian tomorrow.)

The stories. all those stories and the big one that connects them all. That’s why we’re here.

Praying He multiplies the minutes these last two days.

Pinterest meets China

It took a good long time to explain not only the concept of weighted blankets and lap pads, but how we wanted access to rice to fill them. It caused more than a few raised eyebrows. At one point, Joan didn’t even want to translate what I said to her; “I cannot ask that because that is wasteful.”

We may or may not have felt a bit like these photos over the course of that 30 minute conversation with a director.

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But, eventually, we got more to a place like this.

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We took a walk into the depth of their kitchen pantry where a big round cook wearing full on cook-gear showed us the rice storage room where there were at least 25 big 25 lb. bags of rice. We offered to buy a bag from them but in the end, they said we could use it since it wasn’t going to be wasted.


I showed my muscles and asked for the big ole cook to bring it to the conference room for us. He laughed and then pointed to a metal push cart nearby.

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Three of the team spent a good long time filling those things. In the end, the kids and staff loved them, like really loved them.

{wiping sweat from our brows}

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Interested in adopting from China? Contact us at china@awaa.org or by phone at 800.429.3369.

Interested in being a part of a Storyteller Team?  Email missions@awaa.org to learn more.




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