Monday, April 26, 2010

David's First Portraits

I took David in to have some portraits done today. Wow, he was active! But I think our patient photographer, Miss Jenny, got some great shots of him!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Ten Years!

Our first glimpse of our new daughter...
Our big girl now...

Our first family photo...

My, how our family has grown...
Happy Ten-Year Gotcha Day, Hannah! We love you!

Friday, April 09, 2010

Goodbye, Sweet Ida

This afternoon, our sweet hamster, Ida, went to hamster heaven. She had not been doing well for a couple of weeks. Then today, when I checked on her, I just couldn't get her to move, and her breathing was very labored. I scooped her up and held her until the girls got home from school. They had about an hour with her to say goodbye and gently pet her and love on her until she drew her last little breath. We're all sad this evening, but grateful for the time we had with our dear little pet.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Good Friday

by Rachel, age 7

Two Weeks

We've been home with David for two weeks, now. The time has flown, and yet it feels as if he's been a part of our family forever. He is really settling into our family routine - what little routine we have, at this point.

For whatever reason, David hates baths. He stands at the side of the tub and plays in the water when his sisters are bathing, and his shrieks and giggles seem to indicate that he wants in on the fun, too. But not yet. Even after our many attempts over the past few weeks, he still screams and yells when we put him in the water. However, his screaming subsides more quickly each time we bathe him, so hopefully it won't be long before he actually enjoys his baths!

He loves to eat anything we give him, and he's very messy in the process. This is what the floor by his chair looks like after every meal. My broom and vacuum are getting quite a workout.

Trying on his sisters' rain boots...

David's been having lots of fun with his sisters. They have all been so good about playing with him and helping me with him. We have had to teach him about NOT hitting, and they get upset when they are on the receiving end of his outbursts, but they recover quickly and are very loving toward him.

Hannah has particularly impressed us with her care for her little brother. She has a natural gift with young children and wants to be a teacher someday. In the mean time, she is excited to enroll in babysitting classes at the park district this summer and looks forward to being a youth helper in the babies' and toddlers' rooms at church. David will provide her with a lot of practical, hands-on experience!

The other day, I introduced David to PlayDoh. He loved it! Oh, the little things we take for granted that he has yet to learn about!

David surprised me the other day by picking up an apple and eating it whole!

He has been sleeping well throughout the night. He will occasionally cry out in his sleep, but continues to sleep through those times, so I'm only up for a few minutes to check on him. Naps are non-existent. There's just too much fun to be had and too many new things to explore to settle down for a mid-afternoon rest. He has crashed a couple of times in the late afternoon, but then settling down to sleep at night has been difficult for him. On the other hand, pushing through the day without a nap results in a very challenging "Witching Hour" (about 4:00 until bedtime), with frustrations and meltdowns and general ornery behavior. What to do... What to do...

Speaking of ornery behavior, we have had to put the "Time-Out Chair" to use already. We correct David verbally for most infractions, but there are a few things - hitting, scratching, biting, throwing something at someone - that warrant more impressive measures. We pick him up, park him in the chair, look him in the eye and tell him what it was that he did wrong. He fusses and refuses to look at us, but we know he's getting the message. Then we hug and kiss him and send him on his way. We're seeing less and less of the truly offensive behaviors - our method seems to be working.

Those trying moments are few, though. For the most part, David is a fun, loving, happy little boy. He's always ready with arms outstretched for a hug or lips puckered up for a kiss. He laughs all. the. time! He finds great joy in his discoveries of everyday things we take for granted.

David seems to be talking up a storm. I only wish I could understand him! But he's picking up lots of words from us, too. It's so darling to hear him say, "night night" and pucker up at bedtime. Yesterday, we were teaching him to not be so rough as he drew with crayons. Abbie kept saying, "Gentle. Gentle." And he reapeated "gentle" so sweetly - as he smashed the point of yet another crayon! I love to hear him say his sisters' names: "Pan Pan" (Hannah's Chinese nickname), "Ray Ray" and "Abbieeeeeee"! When I tell him, "Well done!", he claps his hands and says, "Yaaaay!"

There's icky stuff, too. This week I had to take him to the pediatrician's office for 4 immunizations, x-rays and gallons of blood work. This is probably the hardest thing I need to do in our adoptions. My son has begun to trust me and rely on me, and then I have to hold him down while strangers prick and poke and stick him. He was strong and fought hard. At one point, one of the lab techs blew up a latex glove to try to distract him. His screaming subsided as he pondered this silly toy, and then he remembered he was angry and started yelling again. I'm glad that part is over!

So that's this week's update on David! I apologize that this post is so disjointed and poorly written. It has taken me all morning and afternoon to put it together. I can't seem to be able to stay on any one task for more than a minute or two before I have to change a diaper, clean up a mess or break up a squabble. But that's OK - I'm loving life with our little boy!