Thursday, July 30, 2009

Home 7 months...

Vera has now been home with us for 7 months! She is just getting bigger and bigger every day! Over the past month we were gone for 2 weeks on vacation. We had a blast as a family.
Vera is full of personality these days. She is constantly on the move and knows what she wants. She isn't talking much more and I think she gets frustrated that she can't talk more. She tries to say words, but a lot of times they sound nothing like they should. She says please a lot, but it sounds more like peas. Vera is 26.5 pounds now, so she has gained over 7 pounds since we brought her home. I haven't measured her height, but I know she has gotten taller. A lot of her pants got to short and her legs look really long.

Firsts for Vera this month...

First 4th of July.
First time to the ocean.
First time meeting characters (Elmo was her favorite).
First time to Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.

Vera loves to swim and will just stick her head right in the water. She loved the beach. She would have ran as far out into the ocean as she could of if we didn't hold on to her.
When I am putting Vera to bed, she loves to be sung to. She likes Rock A Bye Baby and You Are My Sunshine. I know she wants we me to sing when she starts to sing them herself. Then, I start to sing and she lays her head on my shoulder and sucks her thumb. So precious!

She also loves Paddy Cake. She likes to take the hands of the person singing it and make their hands do the motions. Then she likes to do it again and again and get the picture!

It is amazing to me how much Vera has changed. I came across this picture on my brother-in-law's Facebook page and was amazed how little Vera looked.
Vera and me on January 1, 2009.
Vera on July 16, 2009.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

June happenings...

June was a busy month for us. Since I am not good about blogging more often, here is a summary of what we did in June. We took a trip to Chicago that I blogged about here.
Our VBS was the first week of the month. Ryan and I helped with recreation and Kiara and Vera both had a great time in their classes.

My sister and her husband made a trip home at the beginning of the month. I asked my sister to trim Kiara's bangs while she was home since she is adventurous in the hair department. She did a great job!
I celebrated my 33rd birthday. Here is a picture of us celebrating by going out to dinner with parents. It is almost impossible for us to get a good family picture.
This summer Kiara took some fun park district classes. She took a class where she painted with bubbles and one where she painted with vegetables. Here is Kiara, I mean Rosebud, in her Native American jacket she made in another class.
She is also in a dance class where they do tap, ballet and jazz. Here she is for the day they were suppose to dress up like princesses.
Kiara had a few Singsations performances this month, too.
These two are pretty cute, but watch out when they get together!
We also squeezed in a garage sale since our neighborhood was having a sale. It went well, but we still had a lot left over, but very little of it came back in the house.
We also went to a couple of birthday parties for some cousins to round out the month. It was a busy month, but a lot of fun.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Home 6 months...

It feels like I just wrote about being home for 5 months and now we have been home with Vera for 6 months!

Vera is a firecracker and about as polar opposite from the little girl we met in an orphanage in Russia in November 2008! We thought she was a quiet child who liked to observe, but that couldn't be further from the truth. I think she might be louder than Kiara, if that is possible! She knows how to turn on the charm and catch everyone's attention. She is a sweetheart. I love it when she pulls me in for a hug and will just let me rock her as long as I want. 6 months ago, I didn't think that would happen. I didn't know if the way she spent her first year of life would keep her from wanting to be held close and snuggled. It brings tears to my eyes to remember how different things are now even from a couple of months ago.

When I look at her, it is hard to fathom that she didn't come from my body. It just doesn't seem possible that she was born in another country and didn't spend the first year of her life with us. God has truly blessed us with a beautiful child. I praise Him for leading us on this journey. When so many times we wondered if we were on the right path, He was there leading us to our daughter.

I never thought my kids would be so far apart in age. They are almost exactly 4 years apart. Both Ryan and I have siblings that are 2 years or less apart in age from ourselves. As the adoption process was taking longer and longer, I worried my children wouldn't be able to connect with one another. I am happy to say that I worried for nothing. Kiara and Vera already have fun together and enjoy each other's company. So, if that is the case before Vera can even form sentences, I am sure they will only get closer as they get older.
Vera continues to add words to her vocabulary. Her newest word is baby, which she says through clenched teeth. Also, now when she waves she also says "bye bye" very clearly. She is still exhausting because the girl doesn't stop. Even when she is watching her show on TV, she is usually standing and slowly moving around. Her feet just can't stay still!
Vera LOVES to play Patty Cake. Actually, she likes to take your hands and make them do the motions. You can't just do it once, you get to do it over and over and...
Adoption brings such a joy to my heart. Today, Kiara was looking over my shoulder as I was looking at some adoption blogs. This blog had pictures of 2 little boys. One a biological son and one adopted from Ethiopia. She asked me if they were brothers, I said yes. She then asked if they were twins! Not only is there a major height difference between the boys, but one has light skin and one has dark skin. It just warms my heart that Kiara really doesn't see much of a difference from someone biologically having a child and someone adopting a child. I wish everyone saw it that way.