Friday, July 13, 2012

Recap of our Day

It's the little things that make my day. 

This morning, Gus and I headed to Wal-Mart for groceries. I usually shop at Kroger because it's so much closer, but sometimes there are things that we need and we can't get them at Kroger. I always pack snacks and a drink for Gus, and I try to go before lunch and nap-time. Sometimes I'm not so good, and it's a royal disaster, but today we left the house at 10am.

While we were shopping, I gave Gus my cell phone so he could play with some games. Among his favorites are the train videos and then anything with Elmo. He has one that's called "Elmo Calls" and he laughs and laughs, and then there's "Elmo's Monster Maker." He likes this one because you create different monsters and can put them in a variety of settings. One of the cool options for this app is taking a picture of your monster. Gus recently discovered this feature.

Every night I take all the pictures off my phone and put them on my computer. It's a habit that started a long time ago, and it helps to make sure I never lose my phone pictures. Tonight when I took my pictures off, I was surprised with quite a few different monster pictures. They made me smile because Gus made them. It's like a sweet little surprise each time I see one because it's not expected at all. Here are some of the pics that he created and saved:

After Wal-Mart we stopped at Chick-Fil-A for Cow Appreciation Day and grabbed lunch. Gus was rubbing his eyes around 12:45 and so around 1pm, I asked him if he was ready for a nap and he ran to the stairs. We went up and he pretty much went right to bed.

While he was sleeping I got a call from The Adoption Authority (a small agency here in GA). I talked to one of their adoption coordinators and she was able to answer all my questions that I had for her. I REALLY like this agency. They're a Christian agency, but don't require you to do an info session, a weekend retreat, no adoption classes, and no statement of faith or religious references. There are no hoops to jump through and everything is pretty cut and dry. I really like their no-nonsense approach. 

The person that I talked to is named Melissa and she was so sweet. I told her that we're not quite ready to start the process yet, but when we are, I'll let her know. She was very understanding and just really easy to talk to on the phone. I liked everything she told me, and I really hope we can work with them in the future. We need to get some finances secured and start making some strides in our savings first. It'll be nice to have our heads above water and not feel like we're drowning.

For everyone who said some prayers for us to get our house sold-- THANK YOU. It means more than I can even express.

So I talked to Melissa around 4:00 and told her that Gus went down for a nap at 1:00 and he could be waking at any moment, and when he did, I'd have to go. Well... we talked for about 40 minutes and Gus was still sleeping. 

I thought he was awake around 5:00 and had been talking to Michelle... so I went up to check on him and this is what I saw:

He was sound asleep. Guess what time it was when he FINALLY woke up??? 6:00!!! He took a FIVE HOUR NAP!

We think he's going through another growth spurt-- he's been eating everything in sight too. Then he went to bed tonight at 8:45 and crashed!!

I'm hoping to be able to get to Home Depot tomorrow and get some paint so I can paint Gus's sensory table that my dad built for him. It's SO AWESOME! I can't wait for Gus to start using it!!

I'm done blogging... so I'm going to end here. I wanted to include some pictures of Gus and Hobo from this morning... they're so cute.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Currently (7-12-12)

Currently I am...

my family. I know I just saw my parents for a week, but it only made me miss them more. And don't even get me started on my brothers and their families. I'm eagerly awaiting our next trip north when I'll get to spend time with all of them together! It's going to be phenomenal!!

of baby Walker #2. There are some days when it doesn't seem like it's ever going to happen, and then there are so many MORE times that I realize how perfect it is right now with just us and Gus. The dynamics change so much when you have a second (and third and fourth) child. Am I crazy to be a bit sad to think of how it'll change things? I absolutely love Gus and can't fathom having to divide my love and attention between him and a sibling. Yet, on the other hand, I am starting to get itchy for another baby. Gus is going to be such a great big brother and I'm eager to start the process because who knows how long it'll take before we are matched and able to become parents again. It could be really quick (like with Gus), or could take years. With adoption, you just never know.

that we FINALLY got an offer on our house in NC!! It's lower than we had hoped, but we've accepted and signed the paperwork tonight. I'm so thankful to be done with the selling of this house. I hope we don't have to sell another house EVER. It's been the longest, hardest seven months. It'll be nice to NOT have two mortgage payments, to pay back some personal loans, and to finally start building up our savings again!!

at how funny Gus is. He's such a turkey and has such a fantastic personality. I truly enjoy him and think he's so hilarious. Today, he decided that he wanted popcorn for his snack. So, he went to the pantry and asked me to open it, then he pulled out a bag of popcorn and handed it to me to open. I said, "You want popcorn for your snack?" He replied, "Co" (his way of saying popcorn I guess). I opened the package and lifted him up to open the microwave (his favorite part) and then let him press the POPCORN button. Then I put him down and he ran to the cabinet where Steve keeps his popcorn bowl. Gus waited for me to open the lock, then he grabbed his daddy's popcorn bowl, and then closed the door and tried to put the lock back on it. It was so funny!

that God grant me patience with everything. I tend to get crazy focused on things until they happen. It drives Steve crazy. I ask for patience with starting the adoption process again. I ask for patience with planning our November trip to Disney, and I ask for patience when it comes to my weight-loss and exercise routine.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Two Years Ago Today

Two years ago today, we brought Gus home from MI and started our life together as a complete family in our own home.

Being tied up in MI for two months had its ups and downs. The ups were getting to spend REALLY quality time with my parents. We lived with them for a little more than an month and while it was stressful at times, it was so great for them to get to bond with Gus. I can't think of any grandparents anywhere who wouldn't love to have their newborn grandchild at their disposal for over a month! My parents loved on Gus, fed him, helped me with changing him, and they helped to keep my mind off of the looming issues at hand.

The memories from our time with them in MI are some of my favorite. It's so fascinating to see your own parents interact with your child. With Gus being my first, it was incredible. I expected my mom to be lovey with him, but was totally shocked at how affectionate my dad was. I've asked numerous times since Gus was born, "Where was this man when I was growing up???" I love it. I love how open and loving and happy my dad is with Gus.

The downs to our time in MI are BIG. Mainly, being separated from Steve for six weeks. Not just any six weeks, but six incredibly stressful weeks. Six weeks of being a single mother, and six weeks of so many unknowns and so many fears.

There was a lot of stress with our adoption. Not knowing if Gus was going to be ours was awful. I refused to completely bond with him because I was scared to death that something bad was going to happen, and we were going to lose him. It's a fear that no one should have to face, and yet, adoptive parents face this fear every time they adopt.

Anyway... on July 10th, 2010, Steve flew up from NC and we were able to reunite again. It was the best day ever and not only were we united with Steve, but my older brother and his family had just arrived in MI from AZ. It had been years since we had seen them, so it was awesome to spend July 10th together with them.

On July 10th, we went to dinner as a family and it's the first time EVER, that my entire family was completed. Both of my brothers and their families, my family, and my parents-- all out for dinner and it's one of my most favorite memories.

On July 11th, we tearfully said goodbye to my parents and made our way back to NC with Gus. He was two months old, and it was (by far) the easiest 12 hour drive that we've had since! He slept for the majority of the trip and didn't have any troubles at all.

We arrived at home and it was so awesome to be back home. It wasn't awful being at my parents, but it wasn't my home. Gus wasn't in his crib, he wasn't in his nursery, and we were living out of a suitcase. So it was nice to be home and get settled. AND... I missed my fur kids!

I remember that first night home with Gus and sitting in the rocker in his room, the blue and white one that was a gift from one of my former parents at Oak Grove, and I held him as I fed him and tears streamed down my face. 

While we were waiting for a baby, I would go into the nursery and sit in the chair and rock and dream about how awesome it would feel to hold my own child in that chair and rock them. The reality of our dream coming true, was a lot to take and I was overwhelmed with emotions. 

That chair is so special to me. I still sit in it and rock with Gus before bed (sometimes) and read him a story. So many great things have happened in the last two years and two months. Who I am today, is so different from who I was two years, two months and a day ago.

Gus has changed my life and I am so grateful to be his mom.
Happy 26th months to my sweet, sweet angel baby!

Monday, July 09, 2012

Currently (7-9-12)

Currently I am...

Inspired by
my son. Every day he is making more and more strides with his language. We were concerned about his language because he doesn't say  a lot that's really understandable. He DOES talk, but it's not always anything that we understand. For a while, he wasn't repeating words either, but that's all changed. He's doing REALLY WELL and I'm so proud of him.

Sudafed after Sudafed. I have a summer cold and it stinks. I'm pretty sure my parents brought it down with them and passed it on to me while they were here. They said it's only a two or three day cold and by the third day they felt over it (I'm on day two). I hope they're right.

Thankful for
an incredible week-long visit with my parents. Not only was it so great to see them and spend quality time with them, but Gus is finally at a stage where he recognizes them and was very affectionate with them. He was all about crawling up on their laps, eating breakfast with them, and snuggling with them before bed. It was so sweet to see them with him, and I am thankful that we've reached this time in his life.

Parenthood season 1 on Netflix. I just started watching this past season (season 3) and I instantly fell in love with the whole Braverman clan. Now I can't get enough of them and Netflix is helping with my addiction. Do you watch Parenthood?? If not, why not??? It's such a GREAT show!!

to feel healthier (though this past week was not a good week at all). I've been running and logging everything that I consume. It's been hard, but definitely a life-long change. I've lost ten pounds so far and I'm able to run for five minutes at a time (versus the thirty seconds that I was doing when I started back in April). I'm going on three months of changing my ways, and I've realized that my #1 enemy is sugar. I need to reduce the amount of sugar that I consume, and my BIGGEST problem is pop (soda). I seriously have a problem and while I've done great by trying to reduce it to one pop a day, it's still too much. I am vowing to not buy any more pop (Steve, please hold me to this).

Big Boy Bed

Yesterday, we put Gus down for his afternoon nap and he was definitely fighting us on it. He was up in his room singing and jumping. Steve got on the video monitor and told him to lay down. He complied for about two minutes and then was back up again.

Steve looked again, and he was out of his crib and IN HIS CLOSET. Again, Steve got on the monitor and told Gus to get in bed. He climbed back into his crib and laid down, and we assumed he'd be going to sleep (FINALLY).

We were wrong.

About ten minutes later, we heard a really loud crash and then Gus crying. We both ran up the stairs and opened his door and found him on the floor crying, and his dresser completely tipped over. That sucker is HEAVY!!

Thankfully Gus wasn't hurt, but we're sure he was trying to climb it, and that's what knocked it over. We decided that a nap wasn't going to happen and we brought him back downstairs.

We talked last night about moving him to his new room with his big boy bed. He's been interested in his room for a while, but never committed to sleeping in there. We decided against putting him to bed in there, and thankfully, because he didn't get a nap, he crashed and was asleep by 8pm.

So this afternoon, when it was nap time, I asked him if he wanted to sleep in his crib or his big boy bed. He looked at me like he didn't understand what I was asking. I asked again, if he wanted to sleep in his crib, or his dino bed. He said, "Dino bed" and so I took him out of the crib. He ran up the hall to his room, and I grabbed the fan, the baby monitor (not the video monitor) and his radio with his iPod.

I set everything up while he climbed into his dino bed. He was so excited. I tucked him in and went to leave and he started to cry.

Oi Vey!!

I knew that me being in there was going to keep him awake, but I didn't want to leave him in there crying either. So I moved closer to the door every few minutes and I wasn't talking to him. He eventually ignored me and went about his business. When I got up and walked out the door, he didn't seem to care.

He was singing for a while. He has no toys in there, so there wasn't anything for him to do (when he's used to his room, we'll move his bookcase in there). I wasn't hearing anything on the monitor... so I needed to check which setting it was on... back up I went.

This is what I saw when I opened the door:

He was sitting up and looking at me. I fixed the monitor (it was on the wrong setting from the two downstairs). I kissed him goodnight and came downstairs.

About thirty mintues passed and I wasn't hearing anything but his music, so I went up to check and this is the beautiful sight that beheld my eyes:

He did it. He fell asleep in his dino bed. I know that not every nap or bedtime will be this easy, but for a first effort, it's incredible. I am so proud and yet, a little sad. 

His crib is the bed he's been in since he was three months old. To know that he's outgrown it is bittersweet. I'm proud that he's a big boy and has transitioned to his big boy room, but I miss my baby. I know that his crib will serve another baby well (someday in the future). It's been a wonderful phase of Gus's life and I'm proud to have been here to help him move into the next phase of development.

Next up... potty training. I'm not sure we're ready for that, but it'll be here sooner than I realize. He is growing so quickly!!! I wish I could freeze time!!