Alaa Al Halabi's big sister was supposed to move here on Monday.
But President Donald Trump signed an executive order banning travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries.
Among them, Syria, where Alaa was born 11 years ago. Alaa's big brother, Mohamad, was pulled out of school in 10th grade so the family could flee. They moved to Turkey, where their grown children are now. Alaa's big sister is seven months pregnant.
Their flight to the U.S. was canceled.
On Sunday, a reporter visited the Al Halabis to see how they're doing. They had been separated from their two older children for one month and 17 days. Imtithal Al Halabi, the family matriarch, spoke with them by video chat.
Young Alaa grabbed the reporter's camera and started taking photos. The others didn't pay her mind, and she ended up with images that show how people will share a smile with a child even in moments of extreme grief.
Camera in hand, Alaa spoke to her 19-year-old brother in Arabic, and he hammed it up to make her laugh, flexing his muscles.
A family friend said the three family members in Turkey were devastated by the ban on Syrian refugees, and the last-minute cancelation of their relocation to Seattle. She summed up their initial reactions:
"Their son Walid...posted on Facebook when the ban was issued that 'We are not terrorists. We want to live in peace.' Also the son-in-law (the father-to-be) said that all his hopes and dreams that he built on being allowed to come to the U.S, are now crushed."