Monday, December 27, 2010

Pie of Sweetness

This morning, Hayden, Lucy and I were snuggling on the couch. He was reading her favorite book to her, which is a little baby book of first words. He kept saying, "come here, sweetie" to her, in his best baby voice. Then, he turned to me, and said, "I call her Sweetie, becuase she is just a PIE of sweetness! A Sweetie Pie!"

Lucy in her favorite rocking chair by the Christmas Tree.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas...One year!!

One year ago, we saw Lucy's sweet little face for the first time. It was amazing...the best Christmas EVER.
I'm typing from my  hubby's laptop, so I don't have a pic of our sweet girl handy.

We have a long standing tradition of getting new christmas jammies at Grammy's house on Christmas Eve. Then, we wear them ALL day on Christmas day. (remember my ugly referral photos last year? Jammies, greasy hair, glasses??? Ring a bell?) This year was no different, other than cute girlie jammies for Lulu were included in our Christmas Eve loot.

Christmas Morning, Lucy and I were in her bedroom. The boys were patiently waiting in the car. Lucy, although in her sweet little sheep jammies, insisted that she put on some shoes. Her fancy black patent leather shoes. She really loves shoes. As we sat there putting on her fancy shoes and giggling together, I started to cry. One year ago, Christmas morning, I was having a hard time feeling the "Christmas Spirit". I was longing to see our daughters face. We had just finished her bedroom on Matt's Christmas Break, and we were READY. God was so good to us, and we got the call of our life that day.

This Christmas, I am overwhelmingly thankful for our sweet girl who has lit up our life. She is light and joy. We are so enjoying her. she is full of spunk, giggles and learning about 10 new words a day it seems. She's taking little steps, almost walking. She does this silly "knee walking". Where she wants to be upright, but not enough to get up on her feet. She is finally FINALLY giving us real kisses and enjoying it. For ever it seems, when we ask for a kiss, she'd offer her cheek or forehead. But finally she's offering her sweet little slobbery lips! We are loving that. She loves loves loves shoes. Today, she sat with me for 20 minutes while I cleaned her closet to make way for new Christmas clothes. She just sat there trying on shoes and saying "Mo, Mo shoooooos." (More Shoes). Sweet girl!

We saw a naturopath a week ago, who gave us some natural treatment for her continual giardia. We are thrilled to see some improvement. (this will contain poop discussion!) She's been having only one poop a day (after 3-4 per day, normally).  She is no longer begging for food/water every waking moment. We're so glad to be seeing some change.

Wishing a very merry Christmas to all of you families, who we've so enjoyed sharing this wild ride of adoption with this year. It's been a journey we will never ever forget and we're so thankful for the love and support of your unique friendships. Enjoy this season with your precious kiddos, and love and squeeze them all they'll let you. God is so good and faithful to bring us to the place we CAN do that !!!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Great "love makes a family" shirts!

Check out these adorable shirts! I wish I was attending this awesome adoptive mom retreat...but it's in Atlanta, AND it's sold out. But you can be a part by buying one of these great shirts! you can get one HERE.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Thanking Jesus.

I've been spending the day, celebrating my sweet 4 year old boy today (that is another post). We've been making cookies, as I cleaned up I turned on my Christmas playlist and heard this song by Third Day, called Merry Christmas. A whole bunch of emotions came flooding back to me. LAST December, this song made me weep for a whole other reason. We were anxiously waiting. Waiting for news about a baby girl in Ethiopia, who's face we'd never seen. It was all I could do to pull it together and enjoy Christmas without knowing her. Praying every minute I was awake about her and for her. As you know, Christmas Day, we got "the call" and Christmas was made perfect for us.

This year, as I heard this song, I wept for a new reason. Because we ARE NOT waiting. Because this year, this Christmas, she's here. In our arms. This year, I DO get to hug her, and love away her boo-boos, and give her bottles when she's hungry, and give her an unlimited supply of Ritz crackers. This year, I get to be her mama. Today, I'm so thankful. I'm so  very very thankful to be on the same side of the world as my daughter. That this Christmas she's a part of a family, OUR family. We are so blessed to be the ones to love her. One year ago tomorrow, she entered Gladney's care, and they prepared to give us our referral.

Thank you, Thank you, Jesus. You are SO faithful. Even when we can't see the work you're doing, you're still working. You are still meeting needs. You are making a way. You are tying up loose ends. You are reconciling loss and mending hearts. Thank you, for letting us see this one come together.  We are so very very blessed.
Our sweet girl, almost one year ago, 12/18/09

Sunday, December 5, 2010


I'm not even sure where to begin. Life has been feeling crazy and chaotic for us for the past 2 months. When we think we should be heading out of "crazy", something new pops up that keeps the chaos ball rolling. But, in the midst of it all, when we stop to pause, we still feel incredibly blessed.

We had a speaker at our Mom's group this week, and I would say it was one of the most life impacting messages I've heard. It was a man I've known for a long time, named Cliff. His wife, Wendee, was my first real small group leader when I was in junior high. I baby sat their kids weekly for years. Wendee, mom to 4 amazing kids and wife to Cliff, passed away last summer. She was 49. Wendee's passing alone, impacted my life greatly...she was an amazing Godly woman, wife and mother. I think often of her, how she lived and hope that I can live out my life and faith like she did. How she had her priorities in order. How she spent time with the Lord daily. How wise she was. How she said "no" to certain things, and "yes" to her family. Cliff shared about how Wendee left an amazing legacy by journaling her times with the Lord and notes to her kids. Now that she's gone from earth and from them, they have this gift. How her daily quiet times with the Lord, are still impacting their family.

Anyhow, there's so much to think about from that message that I'm still processing, but one thing is clear. I need to be more disciplined in walking with Christ. I need that to feed my soul, so I can feed the little souls in my home. And, I want to journal more to document it.

So, one way to do that is to blog. I need to someday publish the blog in a book, so I have it on paper in our home for our family to remember.

So, on to the milestones. I feel like this always ends up being about adoption/Lucy, which I have a little bit of guilt about, since I do have 2 other amazing kids...but adoption and it's ripple effect on our life feels important to document, for now :)

So, about a month ago, I took Lu to the Dr. AGAIN. When our doc came in, he said, "oh man, she's sick again?" I said, no, not again, just STILL. Not miserably sick, just always this nagging chest congestion and coughing. Sometimes it's worse and she's more "sick" and sometimes it's just in the background, but never fully cleared. I realized it's been that way since we met her in May. And the documentation we got from Gladney, showed that she'd wrestled with the same since she entered their care. So, basically, for a YEAR this sweet girl has been struggling to get a handle on breathing without congestion. So, our doc felt it was time for a referral to an asthma/allergy/immunology specialist. Around that time I decided to try cutting milk out of her diet and see what happened. It really helped clear up her congestion and for the first time she slept without coughing fits.

We visited the specialist last week and they did a bunch of skin tests for allergies, and they all came back negative. Her blood work for bloodcounts, immunology and antibodies were all perfectly normal. Which seems to leave Asthma as the only thing left on the table. We began treatment for that on Monday, but so far, I haven't really seen much improvement. She's still congested, still coughing nightly.

Our sparkley snowflake girl! 
In other Lucy news, she is taking off verbally and physically. She's growing a ton, and adding new words daily to her vocabulary. She's now getting herself up to standing from the floor, without pulling up on anything, and even taking one or two steps to something to hang on to. She is sass and spunk. She always has been, but in other ways we're really seeing her blossom. She's showing us more affection. She's offering snuggles and hugs. I have felt good about our level of bonding all along, but both Matt and I have noticed in the past month, that she seems to have turned a corner. I feel like she's "attaching" more to us all the time. Like when she's unhappy, wanting me for comfort. When meeting a new person, she clings to us and smiles, but wants to stay in our arms.

We have made the move to go back to church and start leaving her in the nursery. The first several times were not good, but also good. She did not like being left. She lasted about 5 minutes the last time. Even though by normal standards, that would be not a parents ideal. We want our kids to be happy about staying in nursery. We have a backwards normal it seems...we were happy when she was sad about being left, because it meant she wanted US. That felt great! It felt like exactly what we would hope for. She's not crazy about being in a crowd of strangers...she only lasts a short time before she starts melting down. Which is okay. We had a party last night we attended and then church this morning...thankfully she was the only babe in the nursery with a lady who was SO excited to have Lucy all to herself. She was hesitant about being left (which was great), but remained happy until we came back to get her. As soon as she saw me, she was falling over herself trying to get to the door. That felt really good! She was clingy to me all morning after that. Even at nap time, when she normally just wants to be put into bed to fall asleep, she wanted me to snuggle her. She is not a real snuggler, other than when taking a bottle and sometimes a quick snuggle before bed. But today, when she was upset, she just wanted me to hold her close. I rocked her until she dozed off, tried to carefully lay her in bed, but she started crying again, grabbing on to me. So, I rocked her some more until she was soundly asleep. That NEVER happens.  I soaked it up, rocking her until she was content, silently thanking God for where we are. I'm so thankful to be this precious babe's mama. Thankful for the milestones, and thankful that she's choosing us.  They don't seem like big deal things to the untrained eye, but they feel like a BIG deal to us.

She's growing in height and weight, weighing in about 22lbs and a whopping 32.25 inches! She's grown SO MUCH in the past 6 months!
For the sake of documenting for ourselves, here's some words she's saying.
ba-ba (bottle)
bye bye
da-dey (grammy)
hada (hayden)
jaaa (jack)
ca-ckoo (cracker)
wa-wee (water)
eee (with a sign, means eat, her FAVE word)
deee (drink)
ni-ni (night night)
uce (lucy)
Abby (her cousin)
Goggy (doggy)
oof (what a dog says)
mow (kitty says)
sssss (snake says, our attempt to get her to make a quiet sound!)
She's constantly mimicking our words and adding new words daily!
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