Saturday, July 15, 2017

How's it Going Here You Ask?

Hello everyone! It has been long overdue that I update you on all that is going on here in our family! It has been 12 weeks since we have arrived home and it has been a whirlwind.

Let me just give you some updates:

We stand in awe of all her progress in talking! She is talking more and more English each day and it is just amazing. Tonight I sneezed and she was the first one to say "bless you!" to me! :) It is always eye opening when your kid is starting to talk... no matter what age... it is really showing on how YOU talk and what YOU say the most... because those are the things they learn to say first.

We stand in awe of all her progress in sleeping. She goes to sleep on her own. She sleeps WELL through the night. Wakes up in the morning in a good mood and takes one nap every day! She loves her sleep (just like her mama).

We stand in awe of her progress of tackling new things! So many years I was so UPSET about all of her firsts that we were missing out on! I was sad that there was so much of her life story that we would not know about and miss.... but in the last 3 months we have been able to be a part of so many of her firsts it has been such a blessing. Her first time bowling. First time in a pool. First time boating. First time swimming in a lake. First time camping. First time celebrating her birthday with cake and presents. First time seeing fireworks. First time eating out in a restaurant. First time seeing a movie in a theater. First time eating many different foods. First time watching baseball. First time playing with toys. First time at a library. First time seeing the trash man. First time riding a bike.... I can go on and on and on and on.... and we still have SO many firsts we get to be a part of (like first time playing soccer on a team. First Halloween...) What a blessing! The awesome thing is that she tackles each scary first.... with such fervor it is amazing! She took on my entire family, fireworks, camping, boating, jumping in an open lake, and sharing her bed/bedroom all in one week!

Every time we ride in the car B will sing (not really the right words) with the radio. She loves singing so much!

When we go shopping we hear: "Oh Wow! I like that!" a million times.

She HAS STARTED TO PLAY!!!!! She plays a lot with The Bash, but also has played by herself in her room. This concept has taken forever.

She went to VBS and was awesome! She sang, danced, played... she was a superstar!

She LOVES books. Love reading me reading books to hear, and her 'reading' books to herself!

She still loves to help, clean, and organize. She loves school (we do learning books at home). She loves to eat pepperoni, eggs, all meat, pizza, and most fruits and vegetables. She loves going to watch The Bash play baseball. She loves water: swimming, sprinkler, slip n' slide, trampoline jumping with the sprinkler...

All in all we are so blessed with all her progress, her attachment to us and our family and our friends, AND her adjustment to being here. We can only thank God for His work in all our hearts! Thank you so much for your prayers along this journey, because we KNOW that is why we are sitting where we are right now!

The Bash is really adjusting to big brother life like a champ. They pick on each other like brother and sister, but they really do play together a lot as well. They egg each other on in good ways and bad. The Bash is loving to her in a way that I stand in amazement too. You cannot teach someone to love the way he does. HE is amazing as well..... How did we get so lucky to have such amazing children?

Prayer Requests For Us:
-That transition back to school goes well: B going to nanny and The Bash starting 1st grade and mom starting a new school year.
-That B continues to grow and make gains

Some Pictures in case you aren't following me on Instagram or facebook much! :)

Monday, May 15, 2017

4 Weeks Later...

Everyone time seems like it passes so quickly.... yet so slowly as well! :)

Lots of people have been asking how everything going so here is our best update:

B is settling in really well! Here's what we have learned:

1- She will probably NOT say hello to you when you meet her the first time. She is not quick to say hello. So please give her space and just wave at her or put your hand for a high five. She is getting better at interacting with a high 5. You can say hello, just don't get offended if she does not react much. She is making progress in this area, but it's still something she is uncomfortable.... and that is OK! :)

2- She LOVES water!!! Since it has been so hot around here we have had a lot of water time. She loves splashing around and getting all types of wet! :)

3- She is getting better with playing with The Bash. They are slowly starting to play together and pick on each other (which I count as win).

4- She has a hard time sleeping through the night. Some nights she does, and some nights she does not.... It's always a mystery what the night will be like!

5- She loves all the food! She really eats everything we have served her and loved it. She loves singing "food for your belly" when it's time to eat! (who doesn't?)

6- We are looking at lots of books and talking about what we see in pictures to help with English. It's slowly coming along. I think that her understanding is far passed her speaking. She loves finding B for her name everywhere we go!!!

7- She has met a lot of our family. She seems to be better when we have people to our house. She feels more comfortable and kinds "lets loose."

8- She likes to push some days.... Some days she likes to push the limits to see what she can get away with. Those days are rough and exhausting. She is so smart and will try things out JUUUUSSSSTTT to see what the reaction may be! :) I count that as a pretty NORMAL kid activity.

9- She is getting better at playing. At first we did a lot of nothing. We are slowly playing more around the house. She really loves The Bash's cars and nerf gun fights :)

10- She loves telling on The Bash when he is doing anything she thinks is wrong! :) She likes to be the boss!

11- She has told us she loves us! It took awhile, but she said it to us! :)

12-She has started to want to tell stories like us. But she doesn't know enough English so she does some gibberish talk. It's awesome!!!! I love her excitement about talking with us!

13- She LOVES to help. If we are doing something/ anything... she wants to help! It can be REALLY awesome (turns the socks right-side out) or really annoying (when I need to sweep and she just hangs on my shirt because there is nothing for her to do) :) But nevertheless... she is SUPER sweet to help.

14- She LOVES everything at stores. When we go shopping she has to show me EVERYTHING "Ooooooo!!!!Mama see?" It takes us forever to get shopping done, but it's pretty cute!

Overall we are so excited about how quickly she adapts to new places and things. I can say that God knew EXACTLY which girl was supposed to be in our crazy family. She has brightened our days and made our home feel even MORE like our home! :)

The Bash has been filling in the big brother role like a champ. He really has been outstanding. He is slowly learning how to show B how to play WITH him... or how to contribute to what he is playing. Hopefully soon they will go off and play by themselves like the crazy kids they are!

Thanks again for all your prayers and notes of encouragement. They are such a blessing to us all. Here are some pictures of our past few weeks!

If you have specific questions you want to know more about, please message me and I will answer it in the next post!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Our First Week In The BOOOOOOOOKS!

Hello all! We have officially been our family of 4 AT HOME for 10 whole days! It's been a whirlwind... and yet so normal! Does that even make sense?

Let me do my best to recap our first week.

The Bash stayed home for Monday and Tuesday of our week. It was a blessed 2 days for him and B to bond. She started to ask for him and follow him around. When The Bash went back to school B kept asking where he was... The Bash started school on Wednesday and had a good 3 days back. I think he enjoyed being back with his friends.

B has done a lot of great things. She has slept like a champ. She has eaten like a champ. She has met a BUNCH of new friends and family. She has been working on colors and we have read a lot of basic vocabulary books. We have worked a lot on how to use words (not whine) and interact with us in a nice way (not just grabbing, biting or hitting when things are frustrating or don't go her way). She has loved doing baby doll hair, SOME coloring, cars, window watching, play-doh, she LOVES helping with any task ever, dancing, singing, and looking at books. She has this cute little purse that she loves to take everywhere. She doesn't really ever take anything out of it... but she loves taking it. Any time we leave the house and I grab my purse, she grabs hers!

This transition has been such a blessing. I must say all your prayers for God to prepare B and our hearts for her to come home.. THANK YOU!!!! It has been such a great transition with her. She is happy. She is settling in like she is home. She is getting used to being here as her home.

Some things we are working on: When she falls or hurts herself... he first reaction is to laugh. I want her to ask for us and get consoled. We are working on her asking for things she needs. She did end up with a stomach ache last Thursday night. She didn't tell me at all and just started crying. I wasn't sure what was wrong with her, until we started getting ready for bed and I felt her belly. It felt really tight. I asked if her stomach hurt and she nodded. But until that point I had NO idea what she was so upset about. That is hard. It is hard that she cannot communicate what is bothering her... when something is bothering her. We will get there though!

This week she has slowly started to interact with other people OTHER than our family. Her grandparents came over on Sunday and she really let loose and hung out with them, even when I wasn't even there! That is good, in that she is REALLY shy at first and really clingy to me when she meets new people and new things. The fact that she is starting to feel so at home that she can let her guard down around others is awesome steps.

ALSO, she has HATED Nala (our dog). BUT, we are making slow steps with that as well. At first we had to keep Nala outside or inside depending on where we were. Now Nala and B can be in the same room and she is fine! She even pet Nala's ear the other day.

Aren't kids amazing? I continually stand in awe of all her accomplishments, her bravery, and her continued growth. 10 days is not that long... yet it feels as though we have been a family for forever. She just stepped right into our crazy family and it has fit so perfectly. God is sooooooooooo good. I have no doubt this girl was meant for this family and we were meant for her.

ONE MORE THING... thank you all so very much! We have had gifts for our kids, food, groceries, gift cards, and just plain 'ol phone calls, encouraging messages, and visits from so many of you! We feel so blessed to have you in our lives. I know that our daughter was blessed to come home to such a huge support system. Please know that she is VERY shy and does not know that much English. So if she does not respond she probably is not fully sure what you are talking about, and is very timid. I'm sure you will ALL get to see our sweet girl's sassy and spunky attitude soon enough. Thank you for being so patient with her and us!

What else do we need?!? Some people asked what else we need. So here is what else we could use: Shoes- she wears like an 11. Kid plates and bowls (plastic) we have some from Target. Bubbles (she loves bubbles). Annnd.... Booze... HAHAHAHA...

On to pictures!
Here are some pictures of things we have done this past week:

Saturday, April 22, 2017

New Chapter... New Beginnings... New Normal

We left off when we arrived home late at night...

Here's how things have gone on these past two days home:

B has woken up really well both days. I have woken up and worked out with my group. The Man wakes up when I do and moves to her room so she does not wake up alone. 

On Friday, she woke up in a good mood and she was EXCITED To play with all the cool new toys. She spent a TON of time playing with the her babies. She had a great time doing their hair and dressing them! :)  Today she woke up and took a bath, and then took a bit to get going... but has started to open up very quickly.

She loves the record player. She loves having music on at all times (our type of gal). She has even figured out how to lower the needle and LOVES it.

She always is looking to help! She wants to help do anything. She even likes picking things up and making sure everything is put away (YES!!!!! Sound like anyone you know.... :) )

She was shocked at the dishwasher, putting toilet paper IN the toilet, and the foamy soap.

Most of the day on Friday we spent at home playing and investigating all the parts of the house. The Man and I were both pretty exhausted from the late night the night before... but honestly her excitement and good mood helped us to keep going! It was chilly outside, but that did not stop us from spending TONS of time outside in the front yard (she tried biking for the first time) and in the backyard  (she climbed up in the play house AND played on the playground... no trampoline yet though).

I have done her hair both days... and I'm not that great at it .... and need to do a LOT more youtube video watching to figure out the best and cutest hair-dos.

She really opened up and has talked, laughed, and smiled a LOT these past two days.

Today, Saturday, has been a lot of feeling out boundaries. I think she is trying to see what she can get away with. What we allow. What we do not allow. What is acceptable and what is not. This happens with all of our kids... Every year I teach I get this same type of activity. We had a few time outs (with me) or time outs from that object (kept stuffing grapes in her mouth and so she had a time out from them... She kept making a mess with her drink by blowing bubbles so she took a time out from her drink...) She makes adjustments quickly and does not hold a grudge when she does have a time out. So all positive things there. The teacher in me is ridiculous! :)

She is SOOOOOOOO sassy. She has a sassy skip. She loves trying to do a lot of things herself. She eats all 3 meals and some snacks. Drinking from her special glass (loves Kool-Aid).

Today, Saturday... she got to work with plants and dirt. She helped dad bring dirt around to the front yard to help our gardens. She wanted to carry it herself... BUT... that didn't quite work! :)  She enjoys being outside.

Bed time... it has actually been pretty seamless so far. It is a little unreal how well she has gone to sleep and how she sleeps through the night. I rock her to sleep and then move her to her bed. So far, she has gotten to her bed and stayed asleep! It's been a surprising blessing!

All in all... we are shocked at how well she has adjusted to being home. It is amazing how quickly she has opened up and just hopped into being here. Most days, hours, minutes, seconds it all seems unreal. This girl we have prayed for, thought about, imagined, talked about, and prepared for... is FINALLY here... and we could not feel more happy!

THANK YOU to all the friends who have made us a meal... Who have dropped over random goodies for our kids and us.... Who have come over to chat or say hello! Thank you to everyone for the hugs.... the prayers... just EVERYTHING... it's such a blessing...