Saturday, May 23, 2009

Pictures from Our Day

Here are a few fun pictures from our day out running errands. We didn't have the camera, so we used the one on the cell phone.

Watching Dirt Bike Racing on the Big Screen

Hola! Donde es la fiesta??

Watching the fishies in his favorite store....... "WALMART!!!"


Our week has been pretty low key. It has been filled with the regular work and daycare. Michael did decide one night that he wanted to be a nudist. After he went to sleep, I went to check on him and he was laying on his knees and stomach totally naked. I now have blackmail pictures for when he is a teenager! It was very cute, but I do not think I will post those photos.

I have been working on Michael's lifebook a lot in the past two weeks. It is a big project. What is a lifebook? It is the story of an Michael's life that contains pictures and text to tell him about his life before adoption, where he came from, and how we became a family. It is written to he age level. It will also be his very own. He can keep it to himself or share it with whomever he would like. It will be his decision as to who he shares his story with.

Before I go, there is one thing I will share about the lifebook. Here is a picture of the cover:

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

What y'all have been waiting for...

I know that you all have been waiting for an update, so here it goes. Since our last update, we have had a lot happen. Michael has continued with speech therapy. He is saying new words everyday. He is also saying new phrase and is able to let us know what he wants. One Sunday, I was in the kitchen and Michael looked at me from the living room. He said, "high chair, bye bye, please." The only time we say high chair is in a restaurant, so the translation of this is, "I want to go out to eat for breakfast please."

On Tuesday April 14, I received a call from Michael's daycare. When they went to wake him up, he had a bloody nose. There was so much blood that they compared it to a CSI crime scene. I picked him up and took him to our family doctor. He could not find anything wrong and gave us some suggestions to keep it from happening again. We followed his directions, but Michael had two more nose bleeds during the next week. These were at night. (I will have to warn you not to get on my bad side, because I have become very good and getting blood out of and off of things.) We became regulars at our doctors office. I must admit that I was starting to think that Michael just had a crush on Ms. Carolyn (the nurse that we go to church with) and wanted to see her as much as possible or that he was trying to play hooky from school. On our last visit to the doctor Michael was diagnosed with a sinus infection. He showed no signs of the infection until over a week after the first nose bleed. He started antibiotics and seemed fine after that.

On April 25, we went to Joseph's baseball game. Joseph has become a very good ball player. It is a lot of fun to watch him. After the ballgame Baba, Uncle Wo (Joe), and Wo Wo (Joseph), went fishing while Michael and I attended Ms. Lilly's birthday party. She goes to daycare with him and was turning 3. There were about 7 kids in attendance. This was the first birthday party that Michael had been invited to. He had a great time playing with everyone and singing "Happy Cupcake" (this is what he says instead of happy birthday) to Lilly.

The week of April 27th was pretty low key. The biggest thing to note is that Uncle Wo's birthday was on April 29.

On May 2nd, we took Michael to Chesterfield Berry Farm for the Strawberry Festival. We all had a lot of fun. He rode the barrel train, rode a horsie, fed the animals, and so on. We also learned that even though he does not seem to care for the strawberry that he LOVES the strawberry milkshake. That evening Gamma and Papa stopped for a short visit on their way to Alabama. They stayed in Alabama for a week and then came back through the next weekend. There will be more on that in a bit.

May 4th was a big day. It was a long day, but a good day. We went to the cleft clinic at VCU to meet with the team of doctors. Michael saw a psychologist, an ENT, a speech pathologist, an audiologist, a pediatric dentist, an orthodontist, and the surgeon who is the head of the clinic. He weighed in at 41 pounds and was 36.5" tall. However, he was wiggling so much that I think he was a little taller than that. The ENT found that one of Michael's ear tubes has come out and that he was starting to get an ear infection. Therefore, he had to go back on antibiotics. All of the other doctors were very happy with his development. We were told that we got the "gold star for parenting" which made us feel good. We also found out that Michael will have surgery this year. During the surgery, they will do multiple procedures. This will keep him from having to get anesthesia multiple times. They will do a uvula repair to finish closing his cleft. They will touch up his nose where it is a little flat to help him breath better. They will also replace the ear tube that has come out. He will have to stay in the hospital overnight again. We are praying that he comprehends what is going on more this time and is able to process it better. Last time we were in the hospital he stayed upset the whole time he was awake. For those of you who know him, it takes a lot for this kid be like that. The surgery will be sometime between the end of August and the end of September. Once we know the date, we will let everyone know.

The rest of that week was pretty calm. Gamma and Papa stayed at the house again on May 8th on their trip back to New Hampshire. This time they did not only have their dog Chloe with them. They had a puppy with them. His name is Thibodeaux (tib-a-doe). It was so cute to see Michael play with the puppy and say "hib-a-oe." On Saturday, we all went to Joseph's baseball game. Then, Gamma and Papa packed up and headed to Aunt Carrie's house for a short visit.

Sunday was my first Mother's Day. It was a wonderful day and there are more posts below about that.

Enjoy these pictures from the last few weeks:

Sunday, May 10, 2009

My Very Special Day

Today has been a very special day for me. I got to sleep in. Then, I was awakened by the sounds of Michael giggling and stabbing me in the face with a card. It was a beautiful card from him and Baba. He even signed it himself. By the signature, I think he will be a doctor when he grows up. After my shower, I had breakfast waiting on me. Bill had made a very tasty meal. It was nice to have breakfast with my two favorite guys. We got ready and headed to church. When we got there, I was met by Joseph. He told me to close my eyes and then made me count to three. When I opened my eyes, he gave me a card that he had made at school. For those of you who know our back story, you will know how special this is. He is a lot like a son to me. It made me cry.... tears of joy. He is such a wonderful kid.

The rest of our day is going to be quiet. Bill is going to clean out the van and change the oil. This is a great present. Do you know how messy a van can get when you have a 2 year old??

I could not have asked for a better first Mother's Day.

Below is a picture of my card from Joseph:

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day! This is for all the mother's who have children in their home, out of the nest, in their tummies, and in their hearts. We know that with adoption the "pregnancy" just takes a little longer.

Today, I get to celebrate my first official Mother's Day. It is hard to believe that this time last year we were waiting to find out when we would go to China to get Michael. Life has changed a lot since then. We were happy before, but it is amazing how much more joy we have in our life now.

After church today, we will do what we do each Mother's Day. We will put flowers on Bill's mom's grave in her memory. There have been so many strong women in our lives. Some are still here with us and some are in heaven looking down on us. Below are pictures of the women who are still with us and have had an impact on each of us.

Gamma (my mom)

Mamaw Kadle (Gamma's mother)

Mamaw Ryan (my dad's mother)

Nana (Bill's dad's mother)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Birthmother's Day

Many of you may not know this, but today (the Saturday before Mother’s Day) is Birthmother’s Day. As I sit here and think about it, there are so many things I wish I could let Michael’s birthmother (and his birthfather for that matter) know. It could not have been easy for her to let go of this precious little boy, but living in China it may have been the only choice that she had. I imagine that she couldn't afford either the fee for a second child or the medical care that was necessary.

I wish I could tell her that he is safe and has a good home. He has a mother and a father, a large family, and many friends who love him dearly. He takes on the world with a handsome smile and a laugh that warms the heart. He is bright, funny, inquisitive, mischievous, fearless, and rambunctious. He is one of the bravest kids that I know. She would be so proud of him.

However, what I really wish I could tell her is that she did the right thing; she gave him life. By her giving him up, he was able to get the medical attention he needed. By her giving him up, he now has a future full of endless possibilities. By her giving him up, we have a son. For that, I will always be grateful. For that reason, today will be a day that we remember her.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Under Construction

Please bare with me. I am going to be making changes to the layout of the blog. It may take a little while to get it exactly the way I want it. Thanks!

What a difference 6 months makes....

I plan to post an update in a few days, but wanted to quickly post these two pictures. We went to the Strawberry Festival at Chesterfield Berry Farm this past weekend. Michael loves to ride the barrel train. He also rode it when we were there in October 2008 at the Pumpkin Festival. It looks like he rode in the same car each time. It is amazing how much he has changed and how much he has grown in the past six months.

Here are the pictures from both of those days.

May 2, 2009

October 4, 2008