Friday, November 28, 2008


This was obviously an extra special Thanksgiving and we had an extra blessing at the table! For the first time in 3 years we were not saying "Next year we will have Lily" and instead we had Lily right with us! We hosted Thanksgiving for 23 family members and with a lot of help from my mom it was a great day. Seeing the boys playing with their cousins and having Lily right in the mix of the chaos brought a lot of smiles to my face. My dad keeps saying its like Lily has always been here and I completely agree. Her little personality is really shining and our routine is starting to fall into place. I took lots of pictures and I just think she gets cuter every day. I can't count how many kisses those cheeks get every hour!!
Lily and daddy playing games with Great Papa

Lily and her cousin Anna.

Monday, November 24, 2008


We celebrated Lily's Baptism on Sunday. I was so excited that Lily fit into the same gown her two brothers and cousin wore. Lily slept for most of the Baptism and didn't mind to much when the water was poured on her head. The day was perfect and it was so great to see Lily with two of her friends from the orphanage. This was also the first time that all five of the "99er" babies were together. After so much waiting it was so great for all our babies to be in one room and to think it was only 1 year ago that we were celebrating the referral of 3 of the babies. Having Lily and Wren home just complete the package!
The picture of the 5 of us is our first family photo. Hard to believe we have been home almost a month and this is the first family picture, just shows how hectic things have been. I feel like this picture has been in the making for 3 years and it's finally complete. I can't stop looking at the picture, it makes everything feel so real!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

One Month Together

October 20th. Our Forever Family Day!

Can't believe we have had Lily for one month! Its been a whirlwind but we are falling more in love every day. I am in awe of Lily's progress and I am so proud of how well the boys have handled the new addition to our family. The big change around here is that we are all getting a little more sleep! Lily is going to bed between 7 - 8 and sleeping through the night until 6:30 - 7:30. She may wake up for a bottle but will generally fall right back to sleep. I am no longer on the floor of her room and Lily does not seem to detest her crib any longer. Lily had her doctors appointment with the International Adoption Pediatrician and the doctor was very pleased will all her skills. Lily's gross motor, fine motor and expressive language skills are all above age level. It is amazing to think this sweet girl spent her first 8 months in an orphanage and yet is at age level for so many of her skills. Lily is a strong little girl and a survivor; she has handled more change in her short 8 months than many people have in a lifetime. Lily has transitioned from her birth mother to an orphanage and then to us. Lily home has changed completely from an orphanage to 3 hotel rooms to our home, all her daily routines are different, she is experiencing a new country and culture, a new diet and a different language. Lily has been to the doctors more times in a month than pro bally her first 8 months. I am in complete awe at how well she is really doing is spite of all she has gone through. Oh, she also gained 1.5 lbs since China, she is still loving the American Food!

Lily making herself at home in my Tupperware cabinet!
Sleeping babies are a beautiful sight!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

We have a mover!

After being home for 2 weeks we are still settling into a routine. Going from two to three kids was a bigger adjustment than I thought. I am amazed at just how much my laundry has grown! I am so lucky to have an amazing group of friends who are bringing us meals twice a week, so we are eating well. Lily is crawling EVERYWHERE, but luckily she has not yet found the stairs. When I leave the room she is never far behind me! We have had a busy week that included getting blood work, which was traumatizing! The lab was unable to find a vein and had to get blood from the finger and we still have more blood to get in order to get all the test done. We attended our last waiting families meeting at our agency. It is a tradition that once you get your baby you return to the meeting with the child and give the others still waiting some words of wisdom. After 3 years it was nice to be the family with the baby! Lily is still dealing with Eczema and a few other skin irritations and she is extremely itchy. I am really hoping that once Lily becomes less itchy she will sleep a little better. We are still battling sleep issues and I have resorted to sleeping on the floor in her room. There is small improvement each night and I think we will eventually get a full nights sleep but I don't think its anytime soon. I am hoping our third week home will bring a little more sleep and a little more routine but either way its all good because I am finally a mom of 3!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

First Week

We have been home for one week. I am 10 times more tired than I expected but it is slowly getting better and its all so worth it! Lily is adjusting well, she loves to eat and play! She is not a fan of sleeping, especially in her crib! I forgot how HARD sleep deprivation is but it is slowly getting better each night. Lily is sooo good when she is awake but I think she releases the stress of all that has happened in the past 2 weeks during the night. She sleeps for about 2 hours at a time and then needs to be reassured and put back to sleep by either rocking or walking. I have walked a lot of miles in my upstairs hallway!

Watching Lily eat is one of my most favorite times of the day. The girl will eat anything! She likes bananas, pears, peaches, carrots, green beans, avocados (spread on a cracker), rice, soup, noodles, pasta, meatballs, chicken, oatmeal and of course her cheerios! She still has no teeth but that does not stop the eating machine!

Lily and cousin Tommy meet for first time

Lily's gross motor skills amaze me! She is crawling and starting to really explore the house. Now she will leave the room and start to wander..I'm in trouble! She pulls herself up and can stand for a few seconds without holding anything! We introduced a push toy to her tonight and I think we are only days away from her walking behind it.

Lily has been a real trooper and has been carted around everywhere this week. Pat went back to work on Monday and the boys had their regular activities. Lily was perfect in Church, went to the boys swim lessons, cub scouts, and a few other appointments. She has met her cousins and a few friends and really seems to enjoy other kids. Every day we see Lily come out of her shell a little more, laugh a little more and really start to realize we are her family. There is nothing better than her reaching out to her mommy and daddy, it melts my heart! She turned 9 months old yesterday and although I can't wait to see what Lily will be doing in the next few months I also want time to stop. I want to enjoy her as she is now before she gets any bigger! I think every day how lucky we are to have her with us and how worth the wait she was!!!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Home Sweet Home

After 30 hours of being awake and traveling we arrived home at 1:00 AM on Thursday. The trip home went well, anticipating the plane ride was worse than the actual trip. Lily slept for about 80% of the trip so we were pretty lucky! Getting off the airplane and seeing our family and friends at the airport was the best part of the trip. Thank you to everyone who made the late trip to the airport to welcome Lily home! The boys arrived home at 9:30 Thursday morning and seeing them was obviously very emotional and exciting. Both boys looked huge!! Lily loves her brothers and Bryce even got her to laugh for the first time! I have been in a daze for days and sleeping is not going so well. I can only hope Lily's clock gets back on track soon and she starts to sleep like when we were in China! We dressed Lily up for Halloween but she stayed in with me when the boys went out trick or treating. We plan on having a low key weekend and spend some time introducing Lily to more of her family.