Monday, December 28, 2009

Our "Bug" is 6 months old!

I can hardly believe it. Vivienne Grace is 6 months old today! Sometimes I feel like it was just yesterday that she joined our family, and sometimes it feels like she has been here forever.
She is such a big girl! On Christmas day, she weighed in at almost 19 1/2 pounds. She goes through clothes like CRAZY, and is currently wearing size 12-18 months in most brands, and size 18 months in Carter's pj's. To put it in perspective, when we adopted Lucy at age 15 1/2 months, she was around 16-17 pounds. Vivi is pushing out of the clothes and pj's Lucy wore while in China! In case you were wondering what we feed her, until last week it was mostly formula! We had introduced a few foods here and there since age four months, but she didn't seem real impressed. Last week during dinner she was sitting on my lap, and as I was eating my soup, she would tilt her head back and open her mouth. Let's just say she has gone full force with her daily meals since then! (And OH BOY did I feel guilty!) So far we have tried rice cereal, peas, squash, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, and today, bananas. Let's just say baby girl loves her some sweet potatoes! WOW, she really makes a go for them!

She rolled over for the first time December 5th. Of course I missed it. I was gone for the day spending time with the family I used to work for, and she did it for dad. (I mean come on girl, I am with you day in and day out and this is what I get...sheesh! I mean, you even said DaDa first...Grrrrr.) She has been a rolling fool ever since!
She is so close to sitting up on her own, but does great when supported a bit. The girl has great abs..I swear one of these days she will go from lying on her back to sitting straight up, and most likely it will scare the crap out of me, but I will still be proud of her!

She's not a huge fan of tummy time, but when she does tolerate it, she holds herself up and is pulling one of her legs up like a frog. Mommy and daddy made a quick trip to Targ*t this weekend for a baby gate so we aren't taken off gaurd when she takes off crawling.

She continues to be in awe of her big sister Lucy, and vice versa. It is ovious there is a bond there that I hope continues forever. Lucy can make her smile like no one else can, and loves to be by her side. They sit next to each other in the morning to eat, and will lay together on my lap to rest. Lucy hates for Vivi to be at grandma's alone, and gets upset when her friends Lexi and Linley want to hold or play with her. (Hmmm, a bit jealous perhaps?)

She shows NO interest in holding her own bottle while she is fed, and think about it...would you if you were a princess and had queen mommy to do it for you?
Didn't think so.
She loves her voice, and let me tell you she has a big one! She squeals, screams, and laughs hysterically, but do NOT make the girl mad. There is no going back! I call her my 0-60 baby. She can go from being happy to screaming in, well, you get it!
Especially when hungry!

She is still a good sleeper. Some days 2 twenty minute naps, other days one long one (1-2 hrs) but will sleep from 9:30-8:30 with just one feeding. Sometimes even longer. I am very blessed that my hubby does the early morning feeding around 5 am before he gets in the shower for work. (What's that?...Me spoiled? Yeah, trust me...I know! Get this, I am also allowed to sleep in on most weekends! Is he a dear or what????)

We go to court to finalize our adoption next week.
It will be a bittersweet moment for me.
For many reasons.
It will most likely mark the end of our adoption journey as a family. Let's face it, adoption is EXPENSIVE, and I don't know how much more our credit can take for awhile.
Also, I have been fortunate enough to have met some great social worker's during this journey. If it had not been for one in particular, Denise, Vivi would not have been placed with our family. ( Long story WAY short, Denise came to our house to do a homestudy update for our Nepal adoption. She happened to ask how we found Nepal, and when I explained through an agency we were looking at for Ethiopia, she pointed out something so simple, yet so mind blowing. If we were open to race, why not adopt AA or bi-racial here in Ohio. And she was right. Why not?) This will mark my close continued conversations with these people.
People I would call to ask a question or voice a concern, and end up talking to for a LOT longer than we all bargained for. People I could bounce thoughts off of...... I know I will still be able to chat with them from time to time, but it just won't be the same. I had to laugh at the end of our most recent (and FINAL!!!) post placement visit. As the social worker walked out the door to her car, she turned and looked at me and said, "You'll be back!" with a sly grin. Will we? Only God himself knows. I sure would like it.

On the other hand, how JOYOUS finalization will be! No more paperwork. No more monthly visits. No more fire inspections by the State Fire Marshal. No more checking of all my outlet covers and cabinet locks. No more fingerprinting. No more background checks from the BCI, FBI and local police. NO MORE NICKEL AND DIMING ADOPTION EXPENSES!
But, the HAPPY and most IMPORTANT part of finalization??
Miss Vivienne Grace being a PERMANENT part of our family. The family who LOVES her, ADORES her, DOTES on her, and will CHERISH her forever and ever! How awesome is that???? And for that......we cannot wait!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Watch Out American Idol! (Maybe....)

Away in a Manger take 1:

Away in a Manger take 2:

Friday, December 18, 2009

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Game Day at the "Shoe"- GO BUCKEYES!

Today we were fortunate enough to be able to watch the Buckeyes beat Michigan at a party at the Horseshoe. Although the game itself was in Ann Arbor, we still had a ball! The Huntington Room was all decked out!

We got to watch a little of this:

Indulge in a little of this......

and A LOT of this.........

During halftime we were able to take a tour of the 'Shoe. This is the view of the Olentangy River and Schott Center from the Suite floor.

The view from the Press Box

The Suite in which Ellen Tressel (Coach Tressel's wife) entertains during home games

And the absolute best part......down on the field! It was AWESOME!

Lucy was so excited to run for a touchdown!

And there it is ...TOUCHDOWN!

Hard to tell, but this is Vivi in the middle of the Block O...just HAD to do it! LOL!

And on the 50 yard line

We had so much fun! Although both girls were pretty darn sick yesterday, 24 hours of antibiotics and some Tylenol seemed to do the trick. I even got some cute family shots worthy of a Christmas card. BONUS!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Vivi's first time seeing Santa-Christmas 2009

I guess you will all notice that Santa is down one kiddo....Miss Lucy! She has been terrified of the man since I forced her to sit on his lap (SCREAMING BTW!) back in 2007. I mean CRAZY afraid! If she even knows Santa is in the building, she will keep looking over her shoulder, or will hide under her blanket. We were hoping with the addition of Miss Vivi to our family this year, that that would change! (She doesn't do ANYTHING without her little sister!) Ummmm, no way..not even close....!! Did I mention NO FREAKIN" WAY?? I am not joking when I say that she would not even step foot on the same FLOOR of the mall with the happy fella in the big red suit ! She stayed upstairs with grandma, peering through the glass partition with one eye ever so slightly cracked open. When Santa looked up and waved to her, she covered her face! Gotta love my strong willed gal! LOL! Vivi on the other hand was a dream! I am so excited to send one of these pics to her birthparents!!

On another note, BOTH girls had their ears pierced today! I was only going to have Vivi's done, as Lucy (and daddy!) has always been so adamant that she did NOT want her ears pierced. While doing paperwork to get Vivi's done, Lucy decides she wants HERS done too. I didn't think she would go through with it, so I agreed. All be gosh darned if the girl went ahead and did it! Didn't even flinch! And, as she sat there beaming saying "DADDY WILL BE SO PROUD OF ME!", I was silently thinking Mark is going to kick my as*! It didn't help that another mom from church just happened to be walking by at the time with her girls and said to me "Is this something you and your husband have discussed?". Oh yeah...she DID. I wanted to hide under the chair! (Turns out she and her girls want THEIR ears pierced but THEIR daddy has said NO.) After we left the store I let Lucy call daddy and tell him what she, I had done. Turns out he was cool with it, especially after hearing how excited she was. Hmmm, who would've thought??

Now, if I can just channel that enthusiasm into getting a picture of her with Santa....

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Our First IFIF (Interacial Families In Friendship) Get Together!

Tonight was our first IFIF group meeting. Although they meet once a month, this was the first one we were able to attend. I am so sorry we didn't get the chance to attend sooner! It was SO FUN!!! Although I am known to be completely outgoing, I can get pretty nervous when I am the "newbie"! I should not have worried because everyone was so open and friendly! In total there were over 75 people, including kiddos! Although the majority were domestic adoption, there were a handful from Ethiopia, 1 from Liberia, and a few the children of interacial couples. What a BEAUTIFUL diverse crowd! (Even another couple like us who recognized us from COFCC events, with a daughter from China the same age as Lucy!) Lucy found herself a new friend and fellow diva in a sweetie named Natalie, and Vivi a new boyfriend in sweet 8 month old Sam! We cannot wait to see them all again next month!
(sorry for the poor pictures! this is what happens when you are too busy yakking and leave hubby to do the know, the hubby that HATES to take pictures... especially the ones you are yelling for him to take from ACROSS the room when you see something cute happening as you are too busy, you know YAKKING! LOL!)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Our 2009 Halloween Pumpkins

These were our attempts at carving pumpkins this year....... the first one was Mark's and mine. It is suppossed to be the Chinese symbol for love, but it was a bit more intricate than we originally thought once we got started. There is even a whole section missing in the bottom of the symbol, but I figure not bad for a couple of novices! LOL! The second one is LuLu's. We gave her a marker and told her to draw what she wanted daddy to cut. What you see is what you get! We about fell over laughing, but she is one proud little girl! I wish I could have cartured the smile on her face when Mark took her out to see them lit on the front was priceless! Hope everyone had a safe and Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fun with the Cousins

Ebert's Pumpkin Farm - Oconomowoc

This past week we traveled to Oconomowoc, WI to visit my family, and introduce them to the newest member of our brood, Miss Vivi Grace. The usual 7 1/2 hr trip from Columbus became 10+ hours with a 3 month old tagging along! LOL! We have hit 2 malls, been swimming, had Vivienne's first visit to the pumpkin farm, and spent many wonderful hours with family and friends. I must say that I never see joy radiate on my daughter Lucy's face like it does when she is with her cousins. There is a connection there, a bond, that I can see she truly shares with them. I am fortunate that no matter what family dynamics I may have with my family.....she still has this.
Vivi has also done well! The first few days she slept little at night (making for a TIRED mommy and daddy!) but the rest of the week she has slept like a trooper. My mom has really enjoyed her time with her, although I feel my brothers are both a bit uncomfortable with the fact that she is AA. (DISCLAIMER!!! THEY claim they are not...) I knew all along in the adoption that this might be the case with some people, but I had hoped deep down that when everyone finally met her, that all that would be washed away. That she would be accepted like any other member of our family. That she would capture their hearts with her cute little smile. But, it is what it is, and fortunately I have some time left to work on them before she becomes aware.
We head home tomorrow, and Thursday is Trick or Treat, so I hope to have some more pics posted soon!