Monday, February 25, 2008

Breakthrough Weekend!

So I started this post in February, how sad that I am so behind. This particular weekend in February we had a major breakthrough with Zoey and Vince. She had been taking a bottle from me in the cradling position finally after two weeks home, but she wouldn't let Vince. After some tips for both of us from our social worker at the International Adoption Clinic at Children's Hospital in Birmingham we had a major breakthrough. It just made her so much happier in many aspects. She began laughing more and playing more. She is high fiving us, waving hi, and playing peek a boo. She is such a joy to us and we love her more everyday!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Other China Pics

For any of you who were wondering, this is a squatty potty. This was one in a village on the way to the orphanage. Most of the public ones we used were much nicer than this and had water running in them! Vince took this picture when we stopped because the bus driver needed a potty break.
These are a few pictures that we took at Zoey's medical appointment in China. Bless her little heart!

This is a picture of Zoey watching TV for the first time, and of all things she is watching Transformers and loving it. That's my kind of girl!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here are some more pictures of Nana in China.

All of the pictures we posted while in China were from her camera because ours wouldn't fit the cord, so these are from our camera.These are some pictures of our favorite store in Guangzhou, also where we had our laundry done. They were so sweet and awesome there.

This is Madison with the girl that worked there.

She knew Madison by name after their first meeting.

These are pictures from Pizza Hut the day of the moving pizza. I was looking my best that day. We were ready to leave Nanchang, it was getting super icee by this point!

Another picture of our little angels!

This was at the Hotel Gloria Grand. We stayed here after sitting at the airport hoping to leave Nanchang. We were eating breakfast in this picture praying to get on the train to Guangzhou!
We were praying desperately because this is what it looked like outside our hotel window across the city of Nanchang!This is the White Swan Hotel in Guangzhou. We felt like we were in paradise once we got here from Nanchang!

Recent Outings and Family Visits

Saturday morning the 9th was Zoey's first trip to ice skating. Madison had a ball getting to show everyone her new little sister. Zoey had several offers for a ride around the rink with one of the coaches, but we had to pass this time, maybe another day, Mommy is not quite ready for that yet!
Sunday the 10th, after church we went and had lunch at Aunt Lee and Uncle Tyler's house (my sister and brother in law). We all had a great time getting to visit, the first time really since getting back from China. All the cousins really enjoyed seeing each other and Zoey loved them all!After lunch Madison, Suzanna, Emily, me, Hope, and Neely all went to see the Hannah Montana 3D movie. They all had a ball and the 3 D glasses are fabulous!

Last Sunday, Vince took Zoey visit her Nona and Uncle David. They had a great time visiting and playing with Zoey!
Of course after Madison's PSR class Sunday morning we had to stop at Starbucks. Look at Zoey trying to grab her straw. The funniest thing is that we went to Target and were looking at some clothes and I saw a straw on the floor. I looked to see if one of us had dropped it and sure enough Vince's was gone. I look over and Zoey has chocolate all over her face and hands. She had grabbed that straw in no time and slurped up that chocolate and whipped cream. We've created a monster!
Saturday afternoon we went to Reconciliation and then to Mass. Zoey was looking absolutely adorable in her new outfit that Ms. Heather brought her last weekend. She is stylin'!
Sunday afternoon we went to Vince's parents to spend the afternoon for our neice's 1st birthday. This was the first time that Vince's sister, brother in law, and our nephews have gotten to meet Zoey. We all had a great time and Sarah and Zoey will grow up to be great buddies I am sure!

Monday on Presidents Day, Madison, Zoey, and I went to Huntsville to visit my parents and my grandparents. It was a nice but short visit. Zoey loved my Dad and Grandparents, and of course was thrilled to get to see her Nana again. I know they have really missed each other. Thank you all for your prayers for my mom. She is doing much better. She does have a bulging disk in her lower back and will start physical therapy soon and is visiting a chiropractor, but is really feeling a lot better!

Only home a little over two weeks and we've dragged this sweet baby everywhere. But if your going to be in this family that's the way we roll! She is really doing well, I am able to cradle her for bottles all the time now. She is sleeping through the night (at least the last few nights), and even drank juice today! She is eating well, napping well, babbling, playing, just thriving. I wish I didn't have to go back to work in two weeks, I soooooooo dread it, but we'll make it through just like when Madison was a baby, it will just break my heart though, like it did 7 years ago. But Madison has done great and I am sure Zoey will too.

Sunday, February 17, 2008


We went yesterday as a family for reconciliation. For those of you who don't know our family is Catholic and Madison will be getting her First Communion in April. Part of that process if for her to go for her first Reconciliation (confession), so we all went as a family yesterday. That is something I have had a hard time with, not being raised Catholic, I didn't feel like it was something I had to do to confess my sins to my priest, I mean I can do that directly to God. But I have learned some things going to meetings for Madison's First Communion and yes, I can confess directly to God, but going to confession is helpful to better my relationship with God by staying conscious of when I sin and my help me keep myself on track better if I go and talk to my priest about it,which is basically what reconciliation is. So Madison went yesterday and did great. I can't believe she is already that old to getting her First Communion.

Adoption Clinic Appointment

I am so behind. On Wednesday Zoey had her appointment at the Adoption Clinic with Children's Hospital. It went well. The social worker and pediatrician are so awesome there! I had met the social worker before at a conference and she really helped me alot. I didn't feel like we were having any attachment issues but apparently I was wrong. I just thought that Zoey liked to take her bottle sitting up, but it was actually that she wouldn't let me cradle her in my arms. So have been working on that and it is going pretty well with me. Now Vince is another story. She will NOT let him cradle her, so we are taking that day by day and trying work on that. She slept ALL the way through the night last night. HOW WONDERFUL IT IS!!!!!!!!!! She sleeps so much better when she is completely swaddled, arms and legs. If her arms are out she has busy hands and swats her face, pulls her hair, and constantly rubs her face. We are also working on her grabbing toys across midline and that is going really well. All in all she is doing really good. Her eating is better, she is not as scared of Scout, and is really happy. She had to have some blood drawn, now that was not fun at all. Four of us had to hold her down so her arm didn't move and it was pitiful to see her so distraught. She also had to have a chest X-ray because she has had a bad cough, but I guess it was fine because I haven't heard anything. They thought that she looks very healthy and is in like the 90% percentile for her height, weight, and head circumference. We go back in 3 weeks for her hearing test and shots, oh joy. I also have to schedule her to have her eyes checked. All in all everything went great I think. We'll see in three weeks.

Friday, February 8, 2008

1 week over and on to 2

Well we've been home over a week and I can't believe how it has flown by. I have often wondered what my friends do that stay home. Don't they get bored? How can they say that they don't have time to get things done? Well God has answered that question for me in a big way! I was so proud of myself yesterday because I unloaded the dishwasher and folded a load of clothes while Zoey was napping. I took a 7 week maternity leave with Madison, but an infant is different. Sure you hold them and feed them and change their diaper, but they also sleep alot and don't play. Zoey has been awake pretty much all week, including nighttime, and loves to play. So during the day, we've been sitting on the floor playing or having visitors. Last night (Thursday) was the first night we haven't been up for three and a half hours straight. I hadn't thought about swaddling her with blankets because in my mind I think how terrible that she has been swaddled in blankets for 7 months, but then a friend pointed out to me that that is all she has known and it might make things easier in transission and sure enough it seemed to work. YIPPEE for all of us! Aside from that things have been great. It's so nice to be home finally and in my bed! I can actually drink water in the shower if I want to. Zoey has not been gorging herself with food anymore either. She's not eating half what she was in China, which has made us wonder if her eating so much was a stress thing those two weeks while adjusting to us. And another thing is I think she is cutting her first tooth, but a molar. Has anyone heard of this? She has a big bump in the back and that is where she is constantly knawing on things. Madison had a program at school last Thursday night and we all went. Zoey did great. She didn't even cry when the music got loud. The program was so good. The 2nd grade at SES was wonderful. It was a patriotic theme and about the states. Madison was right in front! She was Vermont and Washington. Zoey got to go to ice skating last Saturday for the first time, Madison was so excited to show her to her teachers and coaches. She also went to Mass for the first time on Sunday. She did pretty good, but we did have to go to the cry room before half the service was over. Tomorrow we go to the Adoption Clinic for her evaluation. I am really excited to see how things are going with her. Of course, I think wonderful, but it will be good to see what the pediatrician and OT think. She is sleeping great during the night and day, which has made everything better. We got some cleaning done today, sheets washing, vaccumed with her in the hip pack, and mopped. For those who kept up with my blog, my mom went to China with us as you know, and has been sick (very sick) since we got home. She had to have an MRI yesterday on her back. She's had trouble walking and it's looking like she possibly has a bulging disk. Please keep her in your prayers. We all want her feeling better soon! Hopefully she'll hear something about those results soon. I am going to try to get some pictures posted in the next few days.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

WE'RE HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We made it home last night about 9:30. I've never been so glad to be in the USA and in Alabama in my life. We ate McDonald's at the Chicago airport last night and it was the best burger I've ever eaten in my life. Zoey welcomed everyone at the airport with open arms. She smile at her grandparents and all of her extended friends and family very excitedly. After such a long trip I think she did better than we did. We have to thank everyone who came to the airport to welcome us, the ones who cleaned our house and stocked our fridge and cabinets, and all those who have called, sent gifts and come to visit. You'll never know how much all of you mean to us! We were welcomed home with a beautiful sign in our front yard, balloons all over, and a pink bow on the mailbox. Tonight our good friends the McWhorters brought a fabulous dinner and dessert. And whoever left the Milo's tea on our porch, THANK YOU so much! We have truly been overwhelmed by loving kindness! Zoey slept great in her bed last night. We all went to bed late and got up late, but hopefully that is a good thing and we will all get back on track quickly. Vince and Madison get back in the swing in the morning, which I know will be tough for all of us. We'll keep you posted on how life keeps on now that we are finally home. Thanks to all of you for your prayers while we've been gone, they definitely have been answered because we're all home safe and sound. Praise God! The rocking horse was a present from my grandfather, he made it for Zoey and it was waiting for us when we got home last night. Isn't it precious.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Flight problems, Us No Way?

So we left the airport on Saturday morning in China at 6:00 and our flight to Hong Kong was great, only thirty miutes. So we get into the Hong Kong airport and our flight that is supposed to leave at 11:40 is now leaving at 4:50 (we hope). Oh NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. Obviously that means we won't be in Birmingham at 4:35, 8:55 is more like it unfortunately. Madison was crying, I was trying not to. We just want to get out of here!!!!! Anyway, please don't feel like you have to come to the airport at 9:00 at night. Just please send prayers up that we leave Hong Kong at 4:30! We'll see you all soon, we hope! We are flying United Airways flight 6040 from Chicago if you want to check the times with Birmingham Airport.

Last Day in Guangzhou

Yep, you guessed it, Red Couch Picture Day. All of our little Princesses were just precious. Not all of them wanted to sit on the couch, but we all tried to get them to smile. Madison and Zoey of course we think are the most precious, to us anyway! We spent our last day in Guangzhou finishing up shopping and going to the Consulate for our Visa for Zoey. Hooray, we get on the plane in the morning and leave Guangzhou at 8:30. When we went to the Consulate we passed the train station and let me tell you it was unbelievable the crowds and the way the police had the crowds herded like cattle and blocked off in police tape. Hopefully, things will be fine in the morning at the airport. Well, we'll see you all at 4:36PM in the HAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!