Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Two weeks already!

Eli has been home for 2 weeks and it has been such an adventure! On one hand, I can't believe it has only been two weeks because it seems like he has been here much longer. On the other hand, I can't believe it has already been two weeks! I still have moments of shock and disbelief that he is actually home. Moments that take my breath away and random moments of spontaneous tears of gratefulness and relief. It is quite a ride!! A wonderful, amazing, challenging ride.

Eli definitely keeps us on our toes! He is such an active boy. Seriously, he does not stop moving...ever! He has been walking for a little over a month now and he is ready to run. Needless to say, we have already had many tumbles. Most times, Eli is not phased by these falls and we quickly learned to watch his reaction first before we react! Even so, he has already had his share of bumps, scrapes, and bruises in his first 2 weeks home! The worst was when he fell, scraped his chin, and bit his tongue. Good grief! I see many trips to the ER in our future with this boy. Despite the tumbles, he gets right back up and goes at it again.

We were just starting to settle into a good daily nap/bedtime schedule when Eli fell sick and messed everything up! ;) It started with a high temperature for about 3 or 4 days. He did not show any other signs of illness, but we took him to the doctor yesterday to get checked out. The doctor suspected it was a teething issue since his gums were swollen and he did not have any other symptoms of illness. His fever finally went down yesterday, but he woke up this morning with a rash on his neck and all over his chest and stomach! Then the diarrhea started. Oh my. He had a major blowout during breakfast! It was all the way up to his neck, on his stomach, and down his legs. YUCK!!!! And, of course, today was Jason's first day back to work until the end of the school year so it was just me and Eli! I had to strip him down in the tub, getting poo all over me in the process, and spray him down in the shower. GROSS!!! Poor baby! I think he was saving that one up for a couple of days and just waiting to fully initiate his momma! It didn't take long for Dr. Mom to diagnose him with Roseola. He had all of the symptoms at this point. I still called the doctor and she confirmed it was just a virus so we have to ride it out. Thank goodness no more major blowouts, just little ones! So, Eli and I spent the day lounging on the couch. Little pea should be back to himself by the end of the week. Let's hope!! We at least got some updated measurements at the doctor's appointment! Eli is up to 25.9lbs and is 31 inches. That places him in approximately the 75th percentile for weight and length.

Still no progress with the crib, but we aren't pushing it at this point. Eli has never slept alone, other than our time in Antigua (and only part of the night), so it is a huge change for him to be expected to sleep in a big crib, in a room by himself, in a completely new home. He loves to snuggle when he is sleeping and he will reach out in the middle of the night to make sure we are still there. So, it will take time. We moved the pack-n-play in our room and decided to start with that. So far, hit or miss. The longest he has slept in it before waking up crying is 3 hours. It takes time and patience, lots of patience!

Eli's fussy face. We have been seeing a lot of this face lately!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Missing the first 13 months of Eli's life was tough. I tried very hard not to focus on all of those "firsts" that we missed, but it was not always easy. We weren't there when Eli was born, when he smiled for the first time, for his first tooth (actually, his first 14 teeth!), his first babble, his first steps, his first birthday, etc. But, we did not miss everything during those months thanks to all of our visits. We feel so blessed and grateful for everything that we DID experience with Eli before he came home. And, now that he IS home (AMAZING!), we realize there are still soooooo many firsts left for us. Here are a few we have already experienced in our first week as a family at home:

First playtime with his cousins!! What kind of fun trouble are these boys going to get into?!?!

The first time meeting his cousin, K. K, Eli is so lucky to have you as his cousin! You are so loving and sweet with him. Isn't she gorgeous? First visit to the park. Eli LOVED the swing! We were pushing him pretty high and he just smiled and laughed!
First toothbrush! Eli started brushing his teeth tonight and he did great! That is, until momma tried to take the toothbrush away and he screamed. I guess he likes to brush his teeth?!?! Actually, we think he is getting one of his back teeth in and the toothbrush probably felt pretty good to chew on.
First day playing in the home. He loved it.
First full nap in his crib! WOOHOO!!! We're working on it!
I am amazed how how quickly our lives have been transformed. At how quickly the pain and heartache of waiting has melted away. At how well Eli has been adjusting to all of these significant changes in his life. Even so, we are starting to notice the subtle ways in which he has expressed his grief and stress. We are noticing because every day it gets a little better. Every day his hugs get a little tighter, his snuggles a little longer, and he relaxes a little more. Every day he teaches us something new about himself. Every day we learn something new about what it means to be Eli's parents. Every day he makes us laugh, smile, and take a deep breath. Every day we are so grateful and feel so lucky to be his parents.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Best Buddies?

We now have both of our babies at home together! Porter came home on Thursday evening and the first meeting went very well. Eli was initially not sure what to think, but he certainly did not seem scared of our big furry baby. It only took a few minutes before Eli was following Porter around the house. Porter, on the other hand, has been a little jealous that he is no longer the center of attention! He has to be in the center of everything. Even so, he has been very gentle and patient with Eli, just as we expected. I am sure these two will be best buds in no time!
Overall, being home is so wonderful and surreal! We are slowly settling in and adjusting to life as a family. So far, Eli is doing wonderfully. The only minor issue we are having so far is he will not sleep in his crib for longer than an hour. Given all of the changes this little boy has been through, this is of very little concern! The other issue is he is used to taking naps in his stroller so any suggestions are welcome!
Here are some more pics of our first days at home.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

We Are HOME!!!!!!

Oh, what a day. What an amazing day. We are last. My sweet angel is asleep in his crib, in his room, at HOME. Our day started around 3am in Guatemala City and we arrived home around 9pm. Eli was such a trooper all day! He did sooooo well.

The minute our plane lifted from Guatemala City, this huge weight lifted and the tears flowed. All day, Jason and I just looked at each other in giddy disbelief that this was really happening!! We cried when we landed in Houston, we cried when we landed in Detroit, we cried when we got home, we cried watching our sweet pea explore his room, we cried watching our sweet pea drift to sleep in his home.
Our son is home and our hearts feel whole again.
Here is a glimpse of our journey home today.

Waking up for the big day!!

Daddy and Eli exploring the Guatemala City airport.
Mommy & Eli preparing for take off from Guatemala City (and momma trying to keep Little Pea awake until the plane took off!).
Officially a U.S. Citizen in Houston!!
Exploring his bedroom for the first time!
It didn't take him long to find the toybox!
Daddy and Eli playing
First night-night pacha (bottle) at home.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

It was exactly one year ago today that we received "the call" and in an instant we had a son! It is a moment I will never forget! We knew in our hearts the moment we saw Eli's precious face that he was our son. It has been an extremely difficult year, but also an INCREDIBLE year. I tried very hard throughout the year to hold onto faith that there was a greater purpose to our wait though my faith waivered often. Now, I can see that it has all worked out perfectly in so many ways. As my son sleeps peacefully beside me and the bells of Antigua ring in through the window, I realize the timing has been perfect.

My mom sent me this poem in honor of Mother's Day and the start of a new chapter in our lives. It's perfect! Thank you, mom. I love you and Happy Mother's Day!!!


How can I comprehend what I am about to see? The years of waiting now becoming a memory. Your eyes, your skin, your hair. Oh, the wonder of your face! I can’t believe this day we have finally embraced!

Instantly the pain I felt so deeply has now gone. Instantly I have a child to call my very own. Instantly and suddenly you are my dream come true. Instantly, so instantly I have been blessed with you.
I can hardly believe it, how beautiful you are! Practically perfection, the most precious one by far. A gift that was tucked away until this very day that we could meet, I feel complete knowing you’re okay.

Instantly the pain I felt so deeply is now joy. Instantly I now have met my handsome little boy. Instantly and suddenly you are my dream come true. Instantly, so instantly I have been blessed with you.

How can I begin to thank my Father up above for allowing me to know the depth of mothers’ love? Tears I’ve cried before this day don’t matter anymore. There’s joy in my heart from the start that was not before.

Instantly a good, perfect gift was bestowed on me. Instantly we get to share now ‘til eternity. Instantly and suddenly you are my dream come true. Instantly, so instantly I have been blessed with you.

I will try my very best to love and care for you. That’s what your other mom would have wanted me to do. A responsibility and honor to enjoy molding you into a man from just a little boy.

Michele Cervone Scott

Friday, May 9, 2008

Embassy Day

We were up bright and early this morning at 4:45am for our embassy appointment. The actual appointment was so smooth and easy. We had two interviews, each which lasted about 2 minutes! The hardest part of the appointment was waiting! We arrived around 6:45am and we were done at 9:00am. The amazing thing is we were #2 in line and it STILL took that long! We didn't care. We were thrilled to be there. Eli's visa has been approved and it will be ready for us to pick up from the embassy on Monday afternoon. We will be HOME on Wednesday, May 14th. We arrive in Detroit around 4:45pm. We can't wait!!!!! As much as we have treasured our time in Guatemala, we are ready to start life at home as a family of three. We are spending the rest of the weekend in Antigua and then heading to Guatemala City on Monday afternoon.
It is two days before Mother's Day and I have everything to celebrate. It was two days before Mother's Day last year when our lives changed forever. It was the day we saw Eli's sweet face for the first time. Two years in a row I have received the greatest Mother's Day gifts I could ever ask for. Today, I am filled with so much joy, relief, and pure gratitude.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Home Away From Home

Welcome to our home in Antigua! We are staying in a very nice apartment very close to the center of town so we can walk everywhere. It is so great to have everything we need within walking distance. Of course, carrying 25lb Eli is forcing us to get into shape very fast! Antigua is so beautiful and there are so many amazing places to explore. Today we leisurely wandered around our neighborhood. For those who are familiar with Antigua, our apartment is one street over from Cafe Sky on 2nd Avenida South. Our biggest treat today was buying some freshly made tortillas at a little tortilleria around the corner from our apartment. We then had ourselves a little Guatemalan feast with leftover chicken from Pollo Campero and black beans (of course!).

Eli is continuing to do amazingly well with us and we think the attachment has already started, though we realize it is a process and takes time. We believe that all of our visit trips have really made a difference. He is also so tolerable of all our adventures. He rarely fusses and is happy as long as he has some room to roam. For the last day, however, he has been very fussy (which is relatively minor). We figured it was probably due to our hectic schedule this week and all of the change he has endured. Then we discovered that he is cutting FOUR teeth! So, this poor boy is enduring a lot right now!

In other news, Guatemalan adoptions are caught up in yet another political mess. PGN has temporarily suspended the review of adoptions due to a change in command. Of course, this means more delays for families waiting to bring their children home. We are feeling so grateful that we are not caught in this recent mess, but our hearts are breaking for all of the families still waiting.

The main door to our apartment complex. This door leads to the street and is locked. And, that is an advocado tree! Yummy!!

Eli venturing out of our apartment into the courtyard.

The courtyard right outside our apartment.

The two main windows of our apartment.

Eli peeking through the window!
Scary staircase to the bedroom loft. Main living area. There are two daybeds that serve as couches and a dining table.
Main living area

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Forget toys!!

Eli is very resourceful and can find his own entertainment! We could have saved a lot of room in our suitcases by leaving all of the toys at home!

Just put those utensils anywhere, Eli!
What better toy than a water bottle?
Forget the all the toys IN the suitcase!! Climbing in and out of the suitcase is much more fun!
Good thing Jason installed all the latches on our cupboards at home!!
His newest trick today...climbing on the coffee table. YIKES!!
Eli discovered how fun it is to open and close doors! He had a lot of fun playing this game in Panajachel!
So, what do you think we spend most of our time doing? What word do you think Eli hears the most? Hee hee!! I wonder what fun "toys" he will find at home!

Friday, May 2, 2008


We love PINK!!!!! Our appointment is May 9th at 7:15am, just in time for Mother's Day and two days before our one year anniversary of the day Eli came into our lives. What an amazing blessing!! (Okay WIN!!) We are getting ready to head to Lake Atitlan for the weekend so we will be celebrating BIG at the lake!! WOOHOO!!!!!!!

At this point, we plan to head home the weekend of the 19th. YAY!!!!!!!