Monday, June 30, 2008

This is how we roll

What else could a boy need? A cool ride, yummy snacks, and a refreshing for a prince!

Ready to roll...
Eli points at EVERYTHING!!! If only we knew what was going through that brain! He is very good at pointing to what he wants, but he also points at every other random thing! He is also very good a shaking his head "NO" very emphatically when he doesn't want something!

Eli had his 2nd appointment at the International Adoption Clinic last week. He had a hearing test, more labwork, and met with the developmental psychologist. Eli passed his hearing test with flying colors and no news is good news from the lab. So, at least we know he didn't bring home any parasites! Now we just have to wait for the results of his bloodwork to see if any of his vaccines need to be redone. It was great to meet with the psychologist, if only to confirm what we already know: Eli is transitioning very well. We will have a follow-up visit in 6 months. It is so wonderful to have this resource so close to home.

Eli has also transitioned to his crib wonderfully! We couldn't believe it! He still wakes up during the night, not every night. And, he usually falls asleep very quickly after waking up. He also started eating with silverware this week! It only took one meal for him to figure out how to use a fork and he loves it! We are still working on the spoon, but he is getting it. When we first started showing him how to use the fork, we would clap and hoop and holler whenever he successfully used his fork. Now, he has to clap after every bite! It is very cute, but makes mealtime a little longer!!

Unfortunately, we had to do another lice treatment on Friday. But, hopefully we got them all this time.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

We hated to do it, but...

Eli got a buzz. He just would not sit still long enough for us to get all of the nits out. I don't really like the buzzcut look, but I like bugs even less. So, out came the clippers and bye-bye creepie crawlies. He looks so different, but still adorable!!

On top of battling little bugs, Eli also developed a very bad cold and we think he also has croup. He has that awful barky sounding cough and it gets worse at night. For about 3 nights, he woke every 30 minutes because he was either coughing or so congested he couldn't breathe through his nose. Poor baby! Luckily, he is past the worst of it and on the mend! So, we ventured out to the park today to enjoy the beautiful weather.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

A little stowaway

Well...I spoke too soon yesterday!! We took Eli to the International Adoption Clinic yesterday for his big evaluation. We met with the nurse, doctor, nutritionist, physicial therapist, and made a visit to the lab. Overall, Eli is doing GREAT!! Every single person we met said the same thing, "He is so big for his age!" Eli is up to 26lbs and he is 32" tall. He is still in the 75% for height and weight. He has grown an inch since we have been home! Geez!! No wonder he can reach everything on the table and no wonder he has been eating so much! He is on target or beyond on all of his developmental milestones except expressive speech, which is completely expected given he was learning Spanish for the first 13 months of his life! He will catch up very quickly so there is nothing to be concerned about.

So, the only thing that came up at the appointment is Eli has LICE!!!!!!!!!!!! YUCK!!!! The doctor suspects that he probably came home with it from Guatemala. How did we miss this???? Well, there were signs, but none of them were out of the ordinary for him. He has always scratched his head when he is sleepy, ever since he was a teeny tiny pea, so we did not think anything about his headscratching. We also noticed, though, that he had some "dandruff", but we assumed it was from the headscratching and his dry skin. Sigh...poor little guy! I can't imagine where he would have picked it up at home because he has not been around very many kids and we have been spending most of our time at home. So, who knows how long he has been infected. Blech!!! And, given the fact we have all be cosleeping up until very recently, it is no suprise that this momma also has lice. DOUBLE YUCK!!!! So, we spent last night and today treating our heads, cutting out nits, and doing loads of laundry.

And, to top it all off, Eli developed a really awful croupy sounding cough yesterday. So, we enjoyed our short little respite last week! All we can do is just laugh while we are cutting out nits and giving our washing machine a good workout. We really hit the ground running, didn't we?!?!
Daddy on the hunt for nits.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Fav Foto Friday

Just look at that sweet face!!!!
Ahhhh...what a great week. Life has such a new rhythm now and it feels like we are all starting to settle into our own beat. Last week was rough! On top of being sick, I felt like all of the emotions of the past year and half were released and I became this emotional crazy woman. Once we received PGN approval in April, life suddenly shifted into high gear and I feel like I never had the opportunity to fully process everything we had been going through. We waited and waited and waited for that "OUT" call and then...BOOM!!! It was a wonderful, amazing, crazy whirlwind. It is so true that life can change in an instant! In the meantime, all of those emotions of the past year and a half just simmered until last week and then there was another BOOM!!! It was the good, the bad, and the ugly all at the same time. Life has changed significantly in the most incredible way and I just needed to let it all out. Oh, and I did and, wow, did that feel good!! I feel refreshed, reenergized, and completely in love and in awe with this new rhythm of life called parenthood and family.

So what has been going on?
  • Well, I think this is the first week since we have been home that we have all been healthy! Knock on wood.
  • I swear Eli has developed Inspector Gadget arms. We now must have at least a 12" clearance on all tables, countertops, etc or else it will be in someone's little hands!
  • Eli talks almost nonstop. It is so cute and funny! Now, I know many of our friends/family are starting not to believe us because he gets very quiet around new people. But, it's true!! He just babbles constantly. He even has the cutest little whisper. He is experimenting with all kinds of vocal sounds! He says "mama" and is starting to say "papa" and "da."
  • His comprehension has also increased significantly over the past couple of weeks, but we still try to use some Spanish words. But, he no longer looks at us like we are talking jibberish to him!!
  • No one can make him laugh like his papa and he gets so excited when Jason comes home. It just makes my heart swell.
  • And, we are most excited to report that Little Pea has been sleeping in his crib for 2 days(naps and bedtime). Yes, I know, that is not very long, but it is HUGE progress for us!! So we are still happy!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day!!

Meeting Little Pea for the first time in August 2007 - Eli was 4 months old

2nd Visit Trip Christmas 2007 - Eli was 8.5 months old

3rd Visit Trip March 2008 - Eli was 11.5 months old

Homecoming Trip April/May 2008 - Eli was 13 months old

First Father's Day at home 6/15/08!!! Eli is 14 months old

What a blessed day!!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Tornados, flu, and vegetables...OH MY!!

What another crazy week! We have had 3 tornado warnings (meaning a tornado has been spotted) in the last 10 days. Good grief! Our last tornado warning was in 2001. And, one of the sirens is right beside our house so it is LOUD!! So, we have spent some quality family time hangin' in the basement!

Jason, Eli, and Porterdog playin' it safe in the basement!

Future body builder???

In addition to tornados, I caught some icky, icky flu that lasted for several days. I am just now starting to feel somewhat normal again. Blech!! There's nothing like getting sick to remind us of how different our life is now! Now, let's just hope Jason and little pea are spared the ickiness.

In the meantime, Jason and Eli worked on the vegetable garden this week!!
Helping daddy plant the seeds!
Oh yea...DIRT!!!!
Guess where that clump of dirt in little pea's hand ended up?! Yep, a little appetizer before dinner.
Watching Porterdog. Eli loves to watch Porter run around the yard. He just laughs and laughs!
Playing with sticks. No eating this time!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Sleep is sweeeeeet

Awwww...snugglin' with Tigger. We are having a MUCH better week! Eli is getting back onto a regular nap/bedtime schedule and he is sleeping wonderfully. The stroller naps have almost been completely phased out and, as a result, he is taking much better naps. Of course, he is still sleeping with us and needs lots of snuggles when falling asleep, but we are slowly helping him snuggle with Tigger so the two of them can snuggle in the pack-n-play! Tigger was a birthday gift from Eli's foster family. Eli may be sleeping better, but he tends to take over the entire bed so we are not necessarily sleeping better. For some reason, he loves to sleep horizontally in the bed so one of us gets kicked all night and the other headbutted! But, at least Eli is waking up smiling and laughing. And that makes these sleep deprived parents very happy!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

He's back!!!

What a week!! Eli started off the week with Roseola and some major teething (back molars) and then the grieving started. We initally attributed it to his illness and not feeling well, but I think being sick may have helped bring out his grief. We all want comfort and familiarity when sick and Eli has lost everything that is familiar and comfortable. Everything. I can't imagine how stressful and scary that must be. There were several episodes in which Eli would just start crying/screaming/waling uncontrollably and there was nothing I could do to comfort him. He screamed for me to hold him, but then he would push me away. If I put him down, he would start screaming even more. Oh, it was just heartbreaking and I felt so helpless.

He also had several very restless nights of sleep. It was like he just could not get comfortable and he rolled all over the bed all night. There was one night I basically held onto his arm or foot all night to keep him from rolling off the bed. I tried putting him in the pack-n-play, but he screamed! So, he rolled and I hung on tight! Needless to say, neither one of us got much sleep! For several days, Eli also woke up crying in the mornings and from his naps. He has also been especially clingy with me. I can't even go to the bathroom without him crying or searching me out. If I close the door, he stands outside the door and whines. Right now, he needs a lot of comfort and closeness.

But, we had a big shift Friday night. He went to bed pretty early and started the night sleeping on my lap. He fell asleep very quickly and did not stir at all even when we took him to bed. He was conked out! We had not seen this in several days. We all slept very soundly until the tornado sirens woke us up in the middle of the night! Of all nights, the sirens go off when all three of us are finally getting some sleep. (thank goodness we were safe, though) We all went down to the basement and Eli just played, smiled, and laughed. I couldn't believe it! We were back in bed within an hour and none of us stirred until morning. Eli woke up Saturday morning smiling and laughing and was in such a wonderful mood all day. Oh, were we relieved to see that sweet smile again. He was so cute and funny all day. And, he again woke up this morning smiling and laughing.

I am sure we have not completely seen the end of his grief, but I hope we are past the worst of it. As hard as it is to see him go through this, I am actually very relieved. He needs to grieve. He lost his first family and everything that is safe and familiar. And, it also allows him to become more emotionally attached to us as we get through this together. We see him opening up to us more and more each day. I would be kidding myself if I said this was easy. It's not! It is so hard to watch him cry and scream and to not be able to ease his distress. And, it is so hard doubting and wondering if we are handling it the "right" way. But, when I watched Eli wrap his arms tightly around his daddy's neck last night with a huge smile on his face, I knew we must be doing something right.

Kickin' back as he got a ride around the house in the laundry basket.
He loves to swing! The higher the better!
Awww...his smile is back!! Look at those adorable rosie cheeks! I think he broke into a sweat bouncing on the couch.
"Hello? Who's there?" Eli LOVES to pretend everything is a phone. This happens to be the TV remote.