Sunday, December 18, 2011

We're finished!!!

Happy 3rd "Gotcha Day" Nick!

Nick's adoption journey is now complete! We finished his final post-placement visit with the social worker earlier this month. As we talked with the social worker it was a great feeling to tell him that Nick is a completely normal, happy 4 almost 5 year old. Nick is in preschool where he learns and socializes like a normal little boy. Any delays he had when we took him from the orphanage are gone. His health is good too. He still has his heart defect but he is now just monitored twice a year by the cardiologist. If you didn't know he had the defect you would never suspect there was one.

Nick knows he is from Russia and we talk about this fact with him all the time. We want him to proud of his heritage.

Nick still has some memories from the orphanage but I imagine these will fade the older he gets. At this point, it seems as if there won't be any deterimental effects from starting his life out in an orphanage. He is completely attached to everyone in our family and is adored by anyone who meets him. He is one special little boy and we are so blessed to have him in our family. He is the "crowning jewel" of our family. Why we were so blessed with such a precious boy we'll never know but we are forever grateful for the blessing of our little Nick.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Orphan Sunday

I thought since today is Orphan Sunday I post a picture of one of the cutest little boys who is no longer an orphan. We are crazy in love with this little boy. Alex went to homecoming awhile back. Since she is not allowed to date until she is 16 she went to the game with some friends. Usually your date gets you a mum to wear to the game. I didn't want her to not have a mum so I had a friend of mine make her one. She also made a mum for Taylor and Lauren too. By the end of the homecoming game I was wearing both Taylor and Lauren's mum. Alex kept her mum on.HALLOWEEN 2011
I talked Nick into wearing last year's Iron Man costume. He didn't mind at all as long as he got to bring a gun (toy one of course) with him.Lauren is into the Twilight series so she wanted to go as a vampire. She cannot wait for November 18th when Breaking Dawn part 1 comes out.
This is the first year Taylor did not dress up in something pretty for Halloween. Taylor and one of her friends went as "Dumb" and "Dumber" from the movie Dumb and Dumber. Taylor was "Dumb".
Alex and her friend, Taya, went as a baby and an a grandma.

Me and nick

Monday, October 17, 2011

I've got a good dad

Last night Nick asked someone if they had a dad. I guess because he had never seen their dad. After he asked that question he then told them..."I've got a good dad". I have to admit I got a bit choked up with that sweet comment he made about Chris. It definitely made Chris happy to hear that too. What a sweet boy!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

New Boots

Nick needed some new boots. He was so excited when we found some that look very similar to Dad's! He thinks because they look so much like his Dad's he now needs to keep them where Dad keeps his.

Now I have another pair of boots to trip over in my bathroom when they don't really get put up where they are suppose to be.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

The Girl's First Day of School

Now that the girls have been back in school for 2 weeks I thought it might be time to post their first day of school pictures. I'm a bit slow...

Alex--started high school. It is crazy to think I have a daughter in high school.

Taylor---7th grade.

Lauren---4rth grade.
Taylor was not excited that Lauren wanted to have the same "first day of school" outfit as her...just in another color. I kept telling her that the biggest compliment anyone can give you is if they copy you.

Nick started preschool the beginning of August. He is adjusting to the new school. He thinks he is so big going to school like his sisters do.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

It's been a crazy summer!

This summer has been crazy busy. I have barely been home. We've camped a couple of times, took the family on a cruise, been to church camp, a wedding and then to tennis camp and gymnastic competitions. I am worn out. I have one more trip to another church camp this week and then I can finally stay home. I am looking forward to being at home. Here are some pictures from our summer...so far.

Nick loves to eat at the Asian restaurants where they prepare the food in front of you. He calls them the "fire" restaurants.
Nick and his Russian friend. This little boy with Nick was the very first child we had ever met who was adopted from Russia. Meeting this boy was the catalyst for Nick's adoption. To me, these boys look like they could be cousins!
Nick loves Spiderman! He also loves soft serve ice cream. He ate his body weight in ice cream while he was on the boat.

Cute boy
With my sister, Kumari, in Mexico

Alex & Taylor souvenir shopping

Sombrero shopping in Cozumel

Nick watching a movie on the ship's deck

Nick admiring Uncle Coby
Lauren
Taylor
Alex

A family picture at Chris' brother's wedding

Taylor & Alex went to tennis camp while Lauren competed in her National Trampoline & Tumbling Competition.

A very excited Lauren!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It's not Nick's birthday but...

Today is not Nick's birthday. His birthday is in January. However,I read this poem today and it sums up feelings I feel on both Nick's birthday and on Mother's Day about Nick's birth mother.

A BIRTHDAY

It’s my Childs birthday today. He just went dashing by me. His eyes are sparkling with the excitement only meant for today. Presents, kisses, hugs, cake, ice cream; it all seems so natural. It’s a ...day for looking back and looking forward.
It's my child’s birthday today; but there’s something very different happening inside of me. This should be a day of complete joy. A day for thanksgiving;but I’m stopped in the midst of all this excitement. I’m stopped because my thoughts are with “someone” else for a time. It’s my child’s birthday today.I have no memories of his life growing inside of me and fighting to be released. I have no memories from the beginning months of his life. Another “someone” was there. Another “someone” suffered for my joy. It’s my child’s birthday today; but “someone” somewhere is feeling emptiness inside. I wonder if she is wondering:Wondering who he looks like
Wondering how big-how small,wondering if he laughs much,wondering if he will wonder someday, too. It’s my child’s birthday today and in the midst of this blessed day that was given to me I have a prayer: Oh, God that I may never forget that “someone” suffered so much to give life to my child. That “someone” loved my child so very much in that she gave him the right to live. May I never forget for a moment and especially now, today, to offer a prayer of thanks for that “someone”, and that you, dear God, can always be there by that “someone” to help her through the hurts she will have when she stops to think that today is “my child’s birthday”.

I truly feel immense gratitude for a woman I don't know, who lives half-way around the world. I feel grateful to a woman who chose to give my son his life. I don't know if she ever does think about Nick. She may not. We'll never know. What I do know is that I am grateful to her for carrying him to term. She has given our family one of the greatest gifts that one person can give to another.

Monday, May 2, 2011

From brirthdays, to egg hunts to trips...

Nick hunting for Easter Eggs with his Halloween bucket. He was determined to hunt eggs with his Spiderman bucket and NOT his Easter basket!

I went to Time Out For Women this past weekend with my in-laws while Alex & Taylor attended Time Out For Girls with their cousin, Blakely. It was a fantastic weekend. Taylor turned 12 in April. She wanted a "Vera Bradley" hipster purse as her birthday gift. He grandma fulfilled her wish.While me, Alex & Taylor were at Time Out For Women/Girls Chris took Nick on a weekend camping/riding trip with his Poopaw (Grandpa). They also had a great time.
We were all spread out this past weekend as Lauren was at her Regional Competition for trampoline and tumbling. She went with her friend. She too had a good weekend and competed well.When does life slow down???

Sunday, April 10, 2011

National Qualifier!

Lauren qualified to go to the National Trampoline and Tumbling competition! I am so proud of her. Last year she missed qualification by a score of .10. It was heartbreaking for her to be so close but still not make it. This year she solidly qualified to compete at Nationals in all 3 events. Lauren placed 4rth in the state in tumbling!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Memories....

This is a picture of Nick the very first time we laid eyes on him in the orphanage. I have posted this picture before. I have this picture on my iPhone. I can't remember why I have it on my phone, but I do. Tonight Nick was scrolling through my pictures, as he often does, and when we came to this picture I stopped him. I asked him if he knew who the little boy in the picture was. He said, "yes, it's me in Russia". Then I asked him if he remembered me and Dad coming to visit him there. He then said, "yes....then you left me". This is exactly what happened! How heartbreaking that he remembered that we went to visit him and then we left. He didn't know that we were coming back to get him. He just knew we went to visit him and then we left.
Out of curiosity I wanted to see how much he could remember so I asked him more questions. I asked him if he could remember any of his friends there. He couldn't. I asked him if he remembered if he slept in a bed or a crib. He said a bed. I asked him if he slept alone. He said no, lot of kids. He then grew tired of the questions and went to play.

I am convinced he has memories. I don't think he remembers much but the few memories that he has could possibly explain why during the night he often asks, "are you there mom?"

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hello....(addendum added)

I know it has been FOREVER since I have blogged. I got a new camera for Christmas and I do not like to figure new electronic things out. So, I procrastinated dowwnloading pictures because I knew it would involve reading a manual. Ugh! But, I finally read the manual and got some new pictures downloaded. It really wasn't even that hard to figure out.

Lots has happened since my last post. Our 2 year post-placement report was completed in December. Only one more report left to do! WooHoo!

Nick turned 4 in January...crazy! They get to be 4 so quickly when you adopt them at 2 years old! Nick's health is fantastic and he is finally gaining weight and eating! He has a cardiologist appointment tomorrow for a check-up. He hasn't been to the cardiologist for 6 months because he has been doing so well. I am anticipating a great check-up tomorrow too.

This 4-wheeler is one of Nick's favorite Christmas presents! He wants to ride it everyday!
Nick gave me and Chris our favorite Christmas present this year! (It still brings a tear to my eye when I think about it.) On Christmas day,after everyone had opened their gifts and were off playing, Nick and I were sitting on the couch getting one of his toys out of its packaging. (You all know what a job that can be!) As I was working with the packaging Nick turned and looked at me and said...."Mom, I'm so glad to be a part of this family."....WOW! What 4-year old says that? It was a precious moment and one I will remember and cherish for the rest of my life. It makes us wonder what he remembers. We'll never know if he remembers details of his life in the orphanage or just emotions. What made him say that? It melted my heart though.

I think this picture of Nick shows that he is looking more like a little boy and not a baby boy.

Two of the things Chris loves in life. Go figure?!
Taylor went to her Junior Cotillion dance. She really didn't enjoy Cotillion so she probably won't be doing it next year. Alex is getting into photography and is constantly shooting pictures of anyone and anything. She took this picture of herself.Lauren celebrated her 9th birthday last week. Grandma gave her this American Girl doll for her birthday. She is elated with this gift. We have contemplated getting Nick out of our bed and into his own now that he is healthy and sleeping better. However, just as soon as I start to think about doing this he says things in the night that make me think he still needs to be in our bed for security. Two of the most impressionable things Nick has said in the middle of the night in his sleep are...."Mom...are you there?" (As soon as he felt me next to him he went back to sleep.) The most recent one was just a couple of weeks ago and he asked me in his sleep...."Mommy, will you keep me safe?" That one was a gut wrencher! So, for now, he continues to sleep with me and Chris. Nick has even told me that he doesn't want to grow up and sleep in his own bed. Hopefully he will be sleeping in his own bed by Junior High :-)
It is hard for me to refuse these chocolate brown eyes!
ADDENDUM (3-11-11) Today Nick went to the cardiologist. The cardiologist said that Nick's heart "looks fantastic"! He has had a complete recovery and doesn't have to have another echocardiogram for 6 months. The Dr. thinks that Nick's heart defect will very likely resolve within the next 5 years. Hallelujah! We are so grateful!