Hannah is our amazing, loyal, godly, beautiful daughter. She is 22 years old, and a gifted free lance artist. She is a also a Taekwondo instructor working on her third degree black belt. She does incredible works of art: intricate paper cuttings, wall murals, portraits, graphic arts, tee shirt designs, and many other artistic endeavors. She is amazingly talented in so many areas. I don’t know what I would do without her. She loves her siblings and is devoted to helping us raise them to the best of their potential and for the glory of God. She teaches them so many things, and truly loves and enjoys them. She is strong, creative, funny, encouraging, patient, loving, gracious, faithful, and simply delightful. I thank God for her each day.
Canaan is 21 years old. He will graduate as a Physical Therapy Assistant in December of 2013. He also works part time at a warehouse. He can always make me laugh, even on a bad day. His career choice is so well suited for him. He loves to talk to people of all ages, and loves to help them. He is a great big brother to his little brothers and sisters, and they love him. He has coached and refereed his little brothers and sisters' sports teams. He likes the Georgia Bulldogs and the St. Louis Rams and his favorite thing to do is talk. He is a funny, strong, thoughtful, smart, witty, caring, compassionate and talented young man.
Maggie is ten years old and such a lovely girl. She is helpful and friendly to everyone. She has really progressed at gymnastics, and enjoys crafts. She also takes music lessons on the harmonica. She loves nature, and collecting things from nature. She has a white bunny named Lechay, and has taken over much of the care of Hannah’s dog, Biscuit. She loves to read, and enjoys riding on her bike, playing with her friends outside, and just about anything active. Maggie was born in Hunan, China and joined our family when she was just ten months old. She is compassionate, tender hearted, cheerful, helpful, and full of life and joy!
Silas is ten years old as well. I always tell people that he is the bravest boy I know. Silas has had ten surgeries so far. He has scoliosis and had a tethered spinal cord. He has a VEPTR which is basically a rod and titanium brace in his back that correct his scoliosis. He has to have it lengthened every six months, which requires surgery. He always handles it so well, despite how difficult it is for him. Silas is hilarious to me. I love his dry sense of humor. He cracks me up. He is such a good big brother to his little siblings and truly cares for them. He is my best reader, and loves to read books faster than I can give them to him. He is a great speller too. He also enjoys his guitar lessons and is progressing. Silas was 26 months old when we met him in Shaanxi, China. He is an articulate, thoughtful, delightful, precocious, sensitive, affectionate, amazing little man!
My Sunshine, my Lemonade, my Singing Canary. Eden is nine years old and has made me smile every day since we met her. She is goofy, vivacious, and an incredible singer. She is my miracle. She was 31 months old when we met her in Zhejiang, China. A few months before, a friend who was in China adopting from the same orphanage asked about her. Our friend was told that Eden’s file had been pulled, and we would be given a substitute child. Thank God for this, or we never would have known and been able to fight for her, and it would have been too late. Gives me chills. I can’t imagine life without my Sunshine. Eden has had several surgeries to repair her cleft palate, and faces a few more to come. She is creative, loud, imaginative, strong, dramatic, and full of joy.
Isaac was almost four when we met him in Jiangxi, China, and he is nine now. He is such a happy little guy, super friendly and easy going. Wherever we go, people always remark on how pleasant he is. He is all boy, and loves guns, Star Wars, Legos, riding his bike, and sports. He was listed as having some special needs, but when we came home with him and he was tested, none of these diagnoses turned out to be accurate. So he is just a normal, healthy, happy-go-lucky, good-natured,friendly, smiley little guy.
Kiki will be five in June. She had a rough start in life, was very premature with many health problems, and had been basically left to die. But a missionary woman in Ghana took her in so she could die in loving arms, and to the surprise of everyone, was able to nurse her back to health. Likely because of all the struggles she faced so early in life, she has some mental deficiencies and developmental delays now, but she is progressing very well. She also had eye surgery to correct strabismus. She had a hard time adjusting to life in a family, but it has been two and a half years now, and she is now just a delightful, beautiful, cute, funny and happy little girl.
Laz is our newest son. He was completely abandoned at an older age, and we have less information about him than any of our children. In fact, we have no information except for the circumstances of where and when he was found in Ghana. They estimated his birthdate to make him seven years old, but the doctors and his dentist think that is inaccurate. He may only be five or six. Laz has cerebral palsy and cannot talk or walk… yet. He is very strong, and from the few months that he has been home, everyone is very confident that he will be able to do both eventually, to some extent. He is very strong willed as well, but this is likely what kept him alive, and likely what will help him to have the persistence and strength to overcome his obstacles someday. He has a great smile and has learned a lot in a short time. He now speaks several words, with much effort, and is learning to walk with a walker and AFOs, but not without a lot of resistance!
Micaiah is 15 years old and living in Eastern Europe. We will meet him later this summer or early fall we hope. He has been diagnosed with spina bifida, and is in a wheelchair, but since he has apparently never been given proper treatment for it, there may be much that can be done for him. Like many children with physical disabilities in his country, he was placed in a mental institution, even though reportedly his mind is fine. He has never been given a chance, and we feel God wants to use our family to give him that chance. His face looks calm and sweet, and the one video we have seen of him, he looks quite lucid and able. And we just can’t wait to meet him!
Levi will be 13 when we meet him. He is also living in a mental institution in Micaiah’s country, and, like Micaiah, he most likely does not belong there. While he isn’t reported to have any major physical challenges, he has been overlooked for a very long time. All those who have met him are convinced he is a delightful, chatty, lovely boy who just needs a chance, and a home, and a family to love him. We can do that!!
Jordan was our first born daughter, and she is almost 26 now. It has been a few years since we have seen her and we don't know where she is or what she's doing and she does not want us to. She moved to NC with us seven years ago, after a turbulent period in her life. Upon moving here, she discovered she was pregnant, gave birth, and relinquished the child to a wonderful, godly couple in another state.
Never was a child so completely loved and supported in every possible way as our Jordan was. There is nothing we would not have done for her, and very little that we did not do for her. We always deeply wanted what was best for her, no matter what the cost to us. But it was not enough. She eventually moved out of our house, and soon after informed us that she did not want any more contact with us ever. We have tried to contact her without success. As you can imagine, a great amount of damage and hurt has transpired. Our children, especially, had much difficulty with the betrayal and breach of trust of someone they thought loved them. It is hard for them to understand that she was gone from us a long time before she ever left home; we just didn’t know it. There is so much more I could say, but those who truly desire to know the truth have already asked us our side of the story. Those who want to believe what they want to believe, have not.
Samuel and Elijah
When thinking of all of our children, those we've loved, and those we've lost, we must include two little boys we lost before they were born, Samuel in 2001 and Elijah in 2003. They are never forgotten, and held in my heart until I see them again, for the first time.
Mom and Dad
We are Art and Alynn Baker. Some people say we have a big family. Some days it feels that way. We have simply tried our best to do what God has asked of us. This has not always been easy, and our convictions are not popular. We are passionate about many things, but most of all, we are passionate about the Truth. We love God with all of our hearts, souls, and minds, and long to glorify Him and expand His Kingdom. This is what matters.
We all live together in High Point, North Carolina with Hannah's dog, Biscuit (who Maggie takes care of), Canaan's cat, Pizza (who Silas takes care of), and Maggie's bunny, Lechay. Art is an electrical engineer at RFMD in Greensboro, and Alynn has been homeschooling since 1994, and has been an adoption advocate since 2003.