Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Our Family Cheerleader

Brielle is adjusting amazingly well! She is such a happy girl! I love that the first word we knew she understood is "kisses". Within a few days of being home, when she heard the word "kisses" she would either blow a kiss or kiss us on the cheek. I love that the first thing she really understood is that she is loved! She is very affectionate with her family but not so with strangers which is a really good sign in terms of attachment. She is friendly with people, but does her nervous expression which happens to be sticking her tongue out and moving it around. All of her pictures of her homecoming have her tongue out! Her first week with us in Ethiopia, she was extremely subdued and quiet. We had heard she was one of the happiest little ones in her room, but we had yet to see what they meant. Now we know they were right. She is so full of life and not quiet AT ALL. In fact, she gets so excited about everything and exclaims very loudly squeals of delight with lots of hand clapping, waving, and shoulder shaking. Well maybe not shoulder shaking quite so much, but she does love to dance, and for all those who know anything about Ethiopian dance--it is all about the shoulders, so we'll have to show her some of the moves as she grows up.
Brielle is now saying several words and even 2 word phrases such as Bye-bye Dada as she waves to him going to work as well as "up", "mama" and "pup-pa" for our new puppy. Yes we did just get a new puppy 2 days ago just in case things weren't new and exciting enough already--more about that next post.
We are still dealing with her impetigo which keeps popping up on her scalp and are about to start round two of antibiotics. I ended up bringing ringworm home from Ethiopia, so the two of us have been itching like crazy! Thankfully my sores are starting to clear up and hopefully hers will soon too. I've had her on soy toddler formula to give her a break from lactose while she was having diarrhea and it seems to have helped. I am hoping she is not permanently lactose intolerant, but we shall see. For now, I'm just thankful I'm not having to change her outfits 4 times a day anymore.
Somehow, I have begun homeschool with my daughter Kendra and am praying the Lord gives me amazing grace and strategy to accomplish everything I need to. There are literally not enough hours in the day, but somehow they must all be done! I feel like I am being stretched beyond my limits, but know that the Lord is expanding me in so many ways for His Glory and my maturity! I love that His mercies and strength are new every morning!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

We're Home with our Brielle!

This has been a whirlwind month! Only 2 weeks after we returned home, we got a phone call that we were cleared for embassy on the 18th and left a few days later! We were so blessed to get an embassy date less than one month from our court date! We have been home for a week and a half now and Brielle is doing great. She is so precious and fitting right into our family. She has struggled with some sickness since being home but is doing better and sleeping and eating well. She knows the word "kisses" and loves giving them to her mommy and daddy and brothers and sister. She also waves when I say hi or bye and seems to be understanding things pretty quickly. We are enjoying her exploring everything and taking great laugh out loud delight in the simplest of things like the swing in our backyard. We are so thankful to the Lord for the gift of her life. My mom and sister were able to be here for the first week which was very special a HUGE blessing in so many ways. My sons both got croup and my youngest one was extremely sick, so between Brielle and Bryan, we spent 3 out of 5 days at the doctor's office. Thankfully everyone is feeling better and we are getting a taste of what our new "normal" as a family is like. I feel like I'm sprinting to catch up with the rest of life that was put on hold during this last month, but I couldn't be more grateful for the fabulous end to our adoption process and this wonderful new beginning with our Ethiopian princess!