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Archive for April, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday, Seany Angel

 

I love Sean’s birth story!  First of all, my brother and sister in law came over to pick up Sloan for a couple of hours of Auntie and Uncle time and so I decided to head over to Walmart to pick up a couple of things. It was around 4:00 or so. Wouldn’t you know it…. I am standing in the baby section when I feel this really stange sensation of something wet running down my legs… having not felt my water break with Sloan I had no clue what was going on until the trickle became a flood.  I put the gallon of milk I was carrying on the floor along with my other purchases and calmly walked out the door.  I called Brandon, told him to get home and set up the birthing tub we were going to have a baby!!!! We were planning a home birth… so I called the midwife, my best friend Jen, and family and prepared to have a baby, but nothing happened…no contractions….NOTHING!  Infact, I had a house full of people, but no action.  My girlfriends, Kaylee and Jenn and my sister-in-law Summer (who was also prego at the time) took walks around the block and still nothing.  I was restless all night and finally at 5 in the morning Jenn and I headed back over to Walmart, bought a pint of of icecream and some castor oil, went home made a milkshake and I chugged it down.  My midwife told me that castor oil by itself can make you sick but if you take it with something very fatty it won’t.  I tell you what made me sick was eating that much icecream at 6:00 in the morning.  But let me tell you, it did the trick.  Again, my walking buddies, Kaylee and Jenn and I took a long hike in the woods behind our house, timing my contractions as we went.  When we finally made it back to the house it was on.  It was about 12:00 or so.  My midwife made it to our house, I got in the birthing tub and 3 hard, but really wonderful hours later, surrounded by Brandon, my mom, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, best friend Jenn and about 5 other “aunties” Sean made his way into the world. He wasn’t too happy about it, but we were happy to see him.  He didn’t have a name until the next day, Easter.  This was one of the most magical and memorable days of my life. 

Now our number two is turning two and it seems like just yesterday we were looking at him for the first time.  Sean is a funny, happy little boy.  He is independent but cuddly.  Light and dark all at the same time.  He is constantly on the move and always thinking about his next “thing.”  He follows his big brother around and tries to do what he does, yet he is so his own little person.  He can melt your heart with a smile and he is always quick to say thank you.  He does everything with intensity and for a purpose.  We can’t wait to see how God is going to use this little powerhouse.  We love you Seany!

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Blog Surfing

SO my hubby thinks it’s a little strange to “blog surf” and I guess maybe it is…. but it is fun.  I spent the boys nap time today catching up on blogs that I like to read and then following different trails from those blogs to other blogs and websites that they find interesting.  It is amazing how the internet can connect you to things.  I know I have written about that before so I won’t bore you with details, but sometimes when you want a little break from your own life….. you can peek into someone else’s for a while and learn a little something while you are at it.  There are some pretty amazing people out there with some amazing stories.

While I was at it, I updated my blog roll and changed things up a little.  I now have a section of just AGCI (All God’s Children) families. This list includes families in different stages of the process.  I love to read about people who have just gotten their referrals and people who have just gotten home.  It keeps me connected to the experience.  Adoption is such an amazing experience and it is fun to share it with people who have gone through it as well.

So enjoy the new links to these great families and while you are at it…. pray for them.  Adoption is challenging in every phase… whether you are waiting for your referral or have your new child at home with you.  So pray these people up!

By the way, if you are an AGCI family and I don’t have you on my blog roll I am sorry.  I would love to put you on… if you want… just post a comment and I will attach you.

 

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So Brandon and I are finally back in our own room and bed at night…..

“Where have you been sleeping?” you ask.  For the last 2 months we have been sleeping on the couch in our livingroom.  We actually found it pretty comical at first… you know we have this huge king size tempurpedic bed and instead of sleeping there we are sleeping on the couch… Brandon on one end and me on the other, while our youngest sleeps in a tiny pack-n-play next to our bed.  I say we found it funny at first…. that is until we woke up a few mornings with strange kinks in our backs and bruises from the foot of the other person on our legs or backside.  But we were finally getting to sleep through the night and that was worth all of the bruises and soreness.  It was so worth it that we let it continue for over 2 months.  Let me back up a bit…….

As far as kid sleeping goes, Brandon and are pretty much let them put themselves to sleep parents.  This is a controversial topic and so I am just saying what has worked for us.   We were definetly anti the family bed after the first few weeks (for us, no judgement for others who love it)  and were big proponents of not nursing or rocking our kids to sleep.  It worked for us.  Sloan was a breeze and slept through the night from about 8 weeks on, took good naps, and still loves to get into his bed.  Sean was a little more difficult and it took him until about 6 months to really sleep good through the night.  He’s a different kid and I’ll be honest, I didn’t do some of the same things I did with Sloan and actually regret that I didn’t. 

 Anyway, when we started the adoption process and began reading about bonding and attachment, I started thinking about ways we could help our new son connect with us and from the beginning we agreed that we would start out having him sleep in our bed with us as a means for bonding.  We knew that things would be different for him then the other boys and were ready to make the necesary changes.  So when we brought our very sick and scared little Eyob home (we were sick and scared too!) we started out with him sleeping in our bed and nobody slept.  He was restless and clingy to the point where one or both of us was awake all night trying to get him asleep or with him draped across our faces or stomachs or where ever he decided to finally pass out.  For the first week or two he didn’t really have a nap time, he would just fall asleep in our arms because he never wanted to be put down.  Needless to say, we were all tired and grumpy.  Our first step to getting Eyob on a schedule was to put him down for actual naps.  At first, he slept on us in our room, then we put him in the pack-n-play next to our bed and then sat with him through the whole thing in case he woke up.  At night we started by feeding him to sleep and then laying him down… all the while praying he wouldn’t wake up.  Most often he would wake up shortly after we came to bed and then realizing we were in the room would yell and scream until we picked him up.  Still none of us were sleeping.  By the way, we were going on almost a month and a half of no real sleep.  This was not working for me…. I felt like we were doing a disservice to him by not helping him learn to put himself to sleep and by not helping him get good sleep at night and naps. I dreaded going to bed at night, literally would stay up as long as I could so I would not have to be in the room with him and fight him to go to sleep.  I began to get angry at the situation and if I am being completely honest, angry at Eyob.  I knew something needed to change, however, all the adoption books that I read said don’t let your adopted child cry, answer their every need…etc.etc.  I was afraid that if I tried to do some of the things we did with the other boys that we would ruin him for life.  I had this huge check in my spirit that what we were doing wasn’t right either, but instead of listening to my gut and to God, I listened to the “experts.”  All of this is to say, that the experts are right a lot of the time, but they don’t know me and they don’t know my kid.  Finally a girlfriend of mine, who has an adopted child as well, said to me, “Traci, God gave you this child.  He is your son and you need to parent him the way God tells you to.”  Hearing her say that gave me such freedom.  I needed to be reminded that I was the parent and that I was an experienced, loving parent, whom God was still speaking to……

Thus came the move to the couch.  We had a crib set up in Sean’s room that we had intended for Eyob, but we were not confident enough that Seany would be able to sleep through all that was going to have to go on over the next couple of weeks.  So we moved to the couch.  Brandon slept at one end and I slept at the other.  It was pretty hilarious.  We had this complicated system for laying out the blankets and for positioning our bodies so that noone would get a foot in places that a foot should not be.  We would feed Eyob his bottle (at HH ET he was fed to sleep everytime) and then lay him in his bed.  Sometimes he would be asleep and other times we would lay him down awake and he would cry.  We would leave, set a timer, plug our ears and just pray that he would fall asleep.  Let me jut say that this boy can cry… and scream…. and after a few days we began to realize that his cries were different… and I began to feel like his parent.. someone that still had some control of the situation and after about 3 days he began to sleep.  If it weren’t for the giardia he would have slept straight through.  Darn that poop!  And thus, after about 2 months of no real sleep we got some rest and were not about to change it.  Which is why we continued to sleep on the couch…

Until last Sunday when we decided that it was beyond the point of ridiculous and we put him in his crib in Sean’s room.  It is going pretty good.  Sean is transitioning really well, much better than I expected, they actually seem to take some comfort from each other and fall asleep pretty well.   Eyob is waking up in the middle of the night and having trouble getting back to sleep so I am SuperNannying it…. and we are tired again, but now I know there is hope and like anything with children……this too shall pass.

I hope in reading this post any of you fellow moms and dads of adopted kids will trust your instincts and trust your experience and trust God with your adopted kiddos.  The experts are a good place to start, but they aren’t all that is available.  If we are students of our kids… all of them…. God will show us what to do and walk with us.  As with all of my boys, I have to do my best and then trust God to take care of them… the end result is in his hands.

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BackYard Adventures

Here are some pictures of the boys favorite place to play.  This company sells backyard play equipment and they have all of it set up in a large room including huge inflatable dinosaurs that you can slide on and jump around on…. get really tired on and then go home and take great naps….. So for 5 dollars a kid for 1.5 hours you can go and play.  The boys love it… even Eyob.  It has been especially wonderful because living in a townhome we don’t have a yard and because during the winter around here it isn’t as easy to get outside.  Speaking of which it is spring right?  There was snow on the ground when we woke up this morning.  It is supossed to be in the high 70’s tomorrow though.  Go figure!

Seany loves these little slides.  He gets going so fast and lands with such a thud that I am surprised it doesn’t hurt him.  They also love to climb up the big inflatable slides and then slide down over and over.  Forget the ladder…. the slide is better for climbing.  Sloan loves that his brother can do it with him now.

Eyob tries to climb up the slide because his big brothers are doing it.  He doesn’t make it that far but he doesn’t care.

Kind-of a WT hat huh?  I had them going around pretty fast on this, maybe that is why they look a little sick..

The pic of the two blond boys looks sweet, but it was taken right before Sloan gave his brother a nice shove down the slide.  It takes Eyob a while to get up the courage to do things but once he does he is gone.  This is one of the times he wasn’t sure he liked what I was trying to get him to do.

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So Yeah for Backyard adventures!!!

 

 

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Couple Pics

I am so excited….. I have finally learned how to download pictures, normal sized pictures, to the blog.  So I am trying it out with a couple recent pictures of the boys.

Aren’t they a handsome bunch in their matching jammies.  For some reason they love to all try and stand on the ledge and look out the window.  I know, I know it isn’t safe, but what can I say…. I am a mom to boys…  It changes the way you view safe. 

It is snowing here as I type!!!!

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Catching Up

So it has been a while…. almost a month I think.  I don’t really have a good excuse.  Maybe I just haven’t had anything to say. We haven’t been doing a lot, except for trading sickness back and forth.  As a family we are dealing with a lot of tough things.  Work related…finance related….kid related…..adoption related…..health related ……STUFF.  Stuff that has been really occuping my thoughts.  Stuff that is hard to blog about and honestly I am sure no one but us really cares about.  So I have gone underground.  But let me update you on a few things.

Family……we have been sick off and on since we came home from Ethiopia in December.  This last round started with Eyob and ended with Brandon.  Thankfully, I have remained pretty healthy, Brandon on the other hand has had it worse than all of us and it is still lingering.  I swear the introduction of the third child has seemed to bring lots of sickness…not his fault… just more people to catch it, I guess.  Eyob finished a two week course of meds for giardia, but the poo is still here and just as foul… so I am again collecting….  We are pretty ready for the warm weather to be here… it has snowed twice in the last week.  Can you believe it.. APRIL for pete’s sake!  Don’t get me wrong I love the snow, but with three little boys who need to play outside… AHHHHH!!! My mom and dad visited for a week in March, in fact they were here over Easter, which was awesome.  They helped me paint my kitchen… which I am forever grateful for.  We just had a really good time being together.  Everday since then Seany has asked for his “nanny or poppa” at least once a day.  I will post pictures.

Sloan….ever the loving child is such a big help with his brothers.  He can be a stinker to them also, but he really does love them and tries so hard to care for them.  I hear him so often mimicking my voice and words as he tries to coax one or both of them into doing something.  We have started doing some homeschooling….. preschool stuff.   More on that later. 

Sean… is such a fun, busy little boy. He follows big bro around and does whatever he does.  He is turning two next week (tax day) and so I will do a post about him.

Eyob…has a great smile and is walking up a storm, sometimes even running.  I have never dealt with a child that is as strong willed as he is and so that is presenting a problem that we are having to deal with.  I am constantly asking God, what is adoption related and what is just a kid personality issue.  So much of what we are going through is stuff I never imagined we would be dealing with.  You can not prepare enough for adoption.  More on this in a later post.

Brandon… Currently working on starting a business… this is proving stressful and a real test of our trust and faith in God to work things for our good.  We feel like we are following God’s lead, but things are not going the way we had planned.  Pray that God would give Brandon the courage and the faith to trust God and the wisdom to walk forward in all of this.

Traci…I am a tired mommy to three little boys whom I love dearly and who are teaching me so much. I am trying to walk in the wisdom and peace of God right now and seeing Him prove faithful in many areas. I am struggling to understand Eyob, but praying everyday that God would give me wisdom to help him.  I am still coordinating one of our churches MOPS groups and with just a few meetings left in the year we are starting to plan for next year.  I am working on the readopt process with Eyob and we are starting a new homestudy in the next couple weeks (more on that later… just pray). 

I think this stage in our life is really what the title of my blog is about…… climbing further up and digging deeper into Christ.  We are on a journey following a path that we had not planned to take, but we are ever seeking to follow God where He leads us.  It is a painful journey at times, but I am learning to feel God’s love and care through it all.

SO that is us in a post.  I will try to catch up with more specifics this week.

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