Friday, July 25, 2014

One Year Gotcha Day Anniversary!


July 22, 2014 - Gotcha Day one year anniversary 

July 22, 2013 - a very scared Sophie

It has been one year since the hand off. Boy, did the time fly. I still remember that day like it was yesterday. However, Sophie is not that scared, quiet, reserved, little girl anymore.

Not so little anymore....Sophie started out in size 18 month clothes. Now, she is in 3T. She has grown a lot. Her hair is also growing. Sophie is so excited about her hair finally getting long enough to wear pig tails and/or a pony tail.

Not so scared anymore.....Saying Sophie is a social butterfly is an understatement. She loves to tell everyone "hey". She doesn't know a stranger. She also has become more affectionate. She loves to give her family kisses. She will give people at church hugs in the hallway. She still loves going to church; she loves wearing "twirly" dresses and bows. She can now say her prayers. She always thanks God for her family.

Not so quiet anymore....Sophie is a T-A-L-K-E-R. Learning English was NOT a problem for her. She can say anything now and will hold a conversation with you all day if you let her. I think she would even talk to a wall. She will hold a conversation with herself while we are driving down the road. David Ryan is not use to someone who talks nonstop. He tells her to be quiet all the time. And she is a loud talker. We are trying to teach her what an inside voice is, because she takes her loud voice with her to stores, church, libraries, and restaurants. I can always find her and my husband in a store if I separate from them. I can see a lot of notes in the future from her teachers saying "Sophie will not stop talking during class." This girl loves to sing. Currently along with millions of other little girls, her favorite song is "Let it Go". She loves to sing it at the top of her lungs, and the poor thing does not have a chance as a singer in the future.

Not so reserved anymore.....I don't think this girl has the word "still" in her vocabulary. The first day when we got her she just sat in the floor of the hotel room in one spot and didn't move. Now, she can't do that. She isn't even still when she sleeps. This girl is constantly moving. Even strapped in her car seat, she is constantly moving her arms and legs around. Sophie and David Ryan are night and day. He is quiet, laid back, and reserved. She is loud, hyper, and sassy. She is also very clumsy. She will fall about five times from the house to the car. Let's go back to her being SASSY. I was a tomboy when I was little; I didn't like wearing dresses or having my hair pulled back in anyway at all. So, I know, the sassiness is not coming from me. Her bio mom must have been real girly. Sophie has to wear dresses, bows, pretty shoes, and jewelry. Sometimes, she cries when I put shorts on her and says she wants to wear a dress. One day I called her a diva and she started singing back to me "I am not a divaaaaaa!!!" Yeah, right. That just proves that you are a diva singing that back to me. She still doesn't that have much interest in toys yet. However, she does like to play with her mermaid doll and look at books. She loves to play outside! She is has no fear in swinging high or going down a big slide. Another thing that makes her a diva is that she complains a lot. She would complain constantly at her brother's tee ball games. She would say: "The sun is in my eyes," "I am hot", "I am hungry," I am thirsty", "The wind is messing up my hair," "I don't like tee ball," "I am tired," and "I am sweaty".
She is also now fully potty trained, yay!!!!

Again, Sophie experienced a lot of firsts this year. She experienced her first snow. She loved throwing snowballs at momma and daddy.  She had her first Easter, of course, her favorite part was her Easter dress. She had no problems hunting eggs. She loved her Disney princess basket. Sophie went to the zoo for the first time. She also experienced Walt Disney World. She loved it and she did great. We left during the night so the kids would sleep the drive there. She slept most of the way. She was a little apprehensive at first with meeting the characters, but by the end of the first day, she was hugging and kissing them. She was not afraid of the rides. She actually loved the rides. She is a little thrill seeker. Her favorite ride was Goofy's Barnstormer, which is a kid size roller coaster. She loved it! The first time she rode it, she was giggling the whole time, and she said she wanted to ride it again. Her favorite characters were Minnie Mouse and Ariel. She had to buy her an Ariel doll. Sophie loved eating with the princesses! She wore her Belle dress and she was curtseying the whole time. We also went to a water park while we were there. And she loved that! She even loved the big water slide where you rode a raft down. She loved splashing in the wave pool. She got a nice little tan, too! After Disney, we meet up with my family at Cocoa Beach. So, Sophie also experienced her first beach. At first, she didn't know what to think about the sand. She did not like the way the sand felt and kept on saying she was dirty. Day two on the beach, she was playing in the sand and in the water. She never would go that far in the water. The ocean wasn't the same as the wave pool. She loved playing with her cousin Kennedy on the beach. Her favorite beach activities were sitting at the shoreline letting the water cover her up and eating a picnic on the beach. Sophie also celebrated her first 4th of July. She loved doing Sparklers!! Next month, Sophie will experience another first. She will start going to preschool. She is already very excited. The first thing she said was "Yay! Homework." I guess she thinks her brother enjoys doing his homework. She is excited about carrying a backpack, too. She wants to grow up so fast. We are still having trouble teaching her her letters, numbers, and colors. She just doesn't want to sit still long enough to learn. So, I will be praying for her preschool teacher and hoping she can get her still. I know she won't have any problems making friends. Sophie is also very excited about turning four next month, she wants a Disney Princess birthday party!
Sophie has become a sassy little spitfire, but we love her dearly. She has changed our lives forever. Somewhere out there, there is a woman probably wondering about her baby girl. I hope she knows that her baby girl is well cared for and is loved very much.

Celebrating the Chinese New Year at a friend's house

Sophie's first snow!!! (Mississippi snow)

Sophie hunting eggs.

Sophie meeting Belle in her own Belle dress!

She loved Minnie Mouse!


Enjoying the Beach!

American Cutie!

At the zoo, visiting the pandas!

Sophie Wei
Here is a video of Sophie riding the Goofy coaster. It is dark,
but you can hear her laughing.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

It's been 6 months already !?!

July 22, 2013- Gotcha Day!

January 22, 2014 - 6 month Gotcha Day Anniversary

It's crazy how time flies by so fast. It seemed like it took forever to get Sophie during the adoption process. Sophie has really adjusted well. She can just say about anything now in English. Just sometimes we can't always understand her English. She is only using one Chinese word still. Whenever she sees an elderly man, she calls him Yeye which mean grandpa. If you ask her who she is, she will say "Sophie" (She is now saying Sophie instead of Fefe). However, if you ask her what her name is, she will say "Weina." She is still calling David Ryan Bubba, but here lately she tries to say his name and it sounds something like Davarye. She isnt quite potty trained (more on this later) yet. 

Sophie Wei has experienced a lot of firsts in these six months.

Last blog update was 2 months after being home with Sophie and celebration her 3rd birthday. I mentioned in the last post that we were going to go visit my sister during Fall Break, which is a four hour drive. However, Sophie did great in the car. Although she did talk/babbled the entire time which made for an interesting car ride. DR just played video games and maybe said about 10 words total during the whole trip. Not only was this Sophie's first road trip, it was also her first sleep over. She did great with this as well. She had a ball playing with her cousins. My sister also took our family portraits while we were there. She loved posing. I will post some below.

Another first of Sophie's was going to the Pumpkin Patch. This is a tradition that we started when DR was a baby. Sophie loved the hayride and picking out her own little pumpkin. She wasn't too keen on the feeding the barn animals. DR is just now where he will actually feed them. However, I think her favorite part of the day was putting on an orange tutu; this girl loves some clothes. She gets real excited every time she gets dressed in the mornings. She especially loves going to church because she gets to wear her dressy clothes and dresses.  Sophie also had her first Halloween. She went as Sofia the First. She loved dressing up like a princess, which she tends to call herself often. At first, she was hesitant about going up to some stranger's door, but once she saw big brother do it and that the end result was candy, she was all about it. We also trick or treated with friends of ours who has a little girl around Sophie's age. They would stand back and let David Ryan do all the knocking, door bell ringing, and saying trick or treat, but they were there in time for the passing out of the candy. She also told everyone thank you.

Sophie celebrated her first Thanksgiving. I think this is going to be her favorite holiday. Not only does she love clothes, but she loves to eat also. Her favorite words include, " I am hungry," "I want more," and "Momma, I want a snack." ( her favorite are fruits and vegetables, she loves salads) There wasn't anything she didn't like. We caught her several times after she ate sneaking back in the kitchen and having someone give her some more food. This end result won't be too pretty, which I will explain later. We have two Thanksgiving dinners, one with my husband's family and one with my side of the family. After having been stuffed with 2 Thanksgiving dinners, she had an explosion in her diaper. This is the not too pretty result. I actually wasnt home for it, Dustin was at home watching the kids while I ran errands. When I came home, I could smell it as soon as I walked through the door. Dustin said Sophie had pooped so much that it came out of her diaper and she was wiping it all over herself. She was covered in it from head to toe. And this wasnt the last time it has happened. Here lately, it's becoming her thing. Instead of telling us she has to go #2, she goes in her diaper and when she's done, she plays with it and gets it all over herself. Adoption has its nice and dirty. So, sorry to talk about this, but the bad and dirty comes with the adoption journey. We had no attachment issues or really main issues that come along with adoption. So, I guess this the one obstacle we have to overcome (DEFEAT). Despite all the "mess", Sophie really enjoyed Thanksgiving!

Sophie's first Christmas was a success! I was a little worried at first because one day when we were in Target, DR wanted to show Sophie the Christmas trees. When we went to where the Christmas trees were, she started crying and didn't even want to look at them. We put our tree up Thanksgiving weekend and she was fine with it. She was even saying it was pretty. She fussed at her daddy when the lights weren't turned on. She pretty much left the ornaments alone also. I was also worried about her seeing Santa Clause. I don't know if seeing big brother not afraid of him helped or not, but she did fine. She didn't cry sitting in his lap, but she didn't smile either. We had about five Christmases this year since everyone wanted to see Sophie, but she did great at all five of them. She loved the attention! She doesn't know a stranger, but she knows who her momma and daddy are. She had no problem tearing into her Christmas presents. I think she liked opening the presents more than playing with them. She really doesn't know how to play with her toys. I guess there wasn't much to mimic in the foster family or orphanage. She does know how to play with a tea set. On Christmas morning, she did know that Santa brought her toys, but I don't know all what she understood. She loved the trike and doll house that he brought. She knew what to do with the trike by watching big brother. I had to show her how to play with her doll house at first. She really enjoyed the candy that Santa like I said she loves food. She went crazy when someone gave her a Dress Up Princess dress.

Now about Sophie's little personality. She is a "spicy" little thing. I guess that's nicer than saying strong willed. She is very well acquainted with the time out chair. She thinks her cuteness can get her out of a lot of trouble. We are having trouble with her thinking it is funny when she gets out of time out. Being in a foster family with boys has really influenced her. She is rough and tough. She has broken several of her toys and broke our front door handle clean off with the screws still attached. I really didn't experience the terrible twos with my son. He was so quiet, laid back, easy going. Sophie is the total opposite. I am hoping this is just a stage. She doesn't like to share with the kids at the babysitters. She will even take a toy away from them. Sophie is very independent and wants to do what she wants to do. She wants all the attention all the time and if she doesn't get it, she will let you know. She is a very talkative thing. She talks nonstop. DR likes playing the quiet game with her because he always wins. She is going to be a little social butterfly when she does start school. I can see the teacher sending me a note already about her talking during class. She is a little bossy, she likes to tell the kids at the babysitters and her brother what to do. David Ryan tells her "you are not the boss, momma is." Sophie is a backseat driver. She likes to tell you which way to go. Also, I think she has a little bit of road rage; she yells at the cars telling them to move out of the way, lol.  However, she does have her sweet side. She has gotten more affectionate. She loves to give hugs and kisses (especially after being in time out). She loves to cling to your legs while you walk. She is a little goof ball. She will laugh at anything, she especially likes to laugh at what her Bubba does. Her smile can light up a room. She has the cutest dimple when she smiles. She thinks she is grown.  She loves to sing (off key, LOL) and dance. Sophie wants long hair so bad. It's slowly growing, but it's growing.  She loves her Bubba. She gets excited when he comes home from school. The roles have changed between them. When Sophie first came home, DR tried to play with her but she didn't want anything to do him. Now, Sophie is all about DR and he treats her as annoying little sister, which she does like to pester  him. But, isn't that what little sisters are for? She has to give Bubba a kiss every night. They do get along sometimes. They like to team up together against their daddy and "beat" him up. They play really well together outside, but its been so cold, we haven't been able to go outside much. I am hoping their bond grow more. But, it has only been six months where he has been an only child for five years. I am hoping once she gets older and can actually play (know how to play),they will become great playmates. I know they will have their sibling fights, but I also want them to enjoy each other at least some of the time. I think since Sophie is just demanding right now, DR is not all about Sophie. She loves her daddy. She is crazy about him, you wouldn't think that six months ago. She will go up to him and just kiss him all over his cheeks. She likes to help her daddy unload the dishwasher. Every Sunday morning, she has to go show daddy what she is wearing as soon as she is dressed. She doesn't like her food touching. We went out to eat to Outback Steakhouse and I ordered her steamed veggies and she had to separate all the vegetables before eating them. I just she was this particular about keeping her room cleaned and in order.

We are still working on the potty training. We are wanting her to go to at least two days a week at a Preschool next school year, but she has to be potty trained. She was potty trained in China and a couple months after we got home. She will tell us when she has to go #1, and goes to the bathroom. I am telling to teach her that she doesn't have to tell us when she has to go, just go. Well, you already read the going #2 part, so I wont talk about that again.

We took Sophie to the movies the other day to see Frozen. We had already seen it twice before with DR, but we wanted to try taking Sophie and see how she would do. While Dustin and I were discussing it, I said something about her not being able to sit still. DR chimed in and said "yeah, she will be yabbering, too." But, we did take her. She sat in Dustin's lap, she did move around the whole time in his lap. She was quiet about 30% of the time. I wouldn't say she was great, she did okay. She would get really excited when the princesses came on screen, she would tap me on my and yell "look, Momma, Princess!"

Enjoy Sophie's journey over the past 6 months:

Sophie at the Pumpkin Patch

Trick or Treating

Sophie as Sofia the First

She still loves her noodles!

Enjoying her favorite holiday!

Christmas 2013!

Some of the pictures that my sister took
Fall 2013

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Two Months since Sophie!

It has been two months since we have been home with Sophie. She has had no problems adjusting. She has had a lot of "firsts" since we have been back home. She had her first Waffle House, she loves some waffles and scrambled eggs. She has had her first "birthday" with us. She opened her first birthday present on her actual birthday with just us. We took her out to eat to a Chinese Buffet and loved it. The employees there even spoke to her in Cantonese and she still understood what they were saying, so she hasn't lost her native language yet. She also had her first birthday party. Her brother's birthday is just one day before hers, so we had a joint birthday party for them. I was a little worried how she would do on a moon bounce, but she was fine. She just jumped away. She wasn't scared at all. She was so busy that I could hardly get any good pictures of her. She had a Sofia the First cake, which her big brother picked out, and David Ryan had a Jake and the Neverland Pirates cake. They both had a blast. We had friends and family at the party and she did fine with all of them; she likes all the attention anyway. We sang "Happy Birthday" to David Ryan and let him blow out his candles first, since he is the oldest. But, when it was Sophie's turn and we all started to sing "Happy Birthday" to her while bringing out her cake, her eyes got so big. She enjoyed it! She even had no problems blowing out her candles. Everyone at the party was impressed about how good her appetite was; she had two pizza slices. Then, it was time to open the presents. Of course, David Ryan had no problem with this part. Once Sophie saw David Ryan start in on his presents, she was all about it. She wasn't overwhelmed or anything, she knew those were "Sophie's things". She really got excited over a dress up princess dress and pajamas; she loves clothes.

Sophie has been to her first Mustangs football game. Her daddy is one of the coaches of a high school football team. She did fine at the game, she just wore this momma out. She was constantly moving from bleacher to bleacher or trying to jump from bleacher to bleacher. Thank goodness "Granny" was there, because one more kid does make a difference and with Sophie it is like having two more. She is a little busy thing.

Sister and brother are playing and getting along a little better. Their favorite thing to do is to chase each other around the house. David Ryan has become more accepting of her than she has of him, but she is learning. It's all about Sophie or at least Sophie thinks it should be like that. She is learning that she has a brother that needs attention and loving, too. She does like to chase him around the house trying to give him kisses. She has started calling him "Bubba" since she can't say David Ryan. She does like to make sure Bubba is coming with us when it is time to go somewhere. She gets his shoes for him and tells him it is time to go. She does love her Bubba and she even tells him  'I  oove you Bubba"

Sophie went to her first Disney on Ice show. Of course, David Ryan loved it; he is a Disney fanatic. Sophie had a good time, too. She didn't sit still in her seat, but she loved when Minnie Mouse came out. She got really excited and started cheering & dancing for Minnie Mouse. And when Minnie left the stage, she was asking "where Minnie go?" She loves Minnie Mouse, I wonder if her room being done in Minnie Mouse has any affect on that.

Sophie was invited to her first birthday party. One of my mentors (during our adoption) invited us to their little girl's birthday party. She did fine in a house that she has never been to and people she has never met before.

I had to start going back to work after Labor Day. She is staying with my mom, but I was still worried with how she would do all day there since I haven't left her at moms for long periods. Before I went back to work, I did leave her over there for short periods while I ran errands to get her use to staying over there. On the first day leaving her, she did fine. She has another little girl about her age to play with over there. They have become the best of little friends; even though they fight and argue over toys, they still love each other. Every morning on the way to mom's, Sophie is always asking about Harper. She loves her mawmaw and pawpaw, but she is crazy about her pawpaw (my dad). She is always running to him with arms wide open when he gets off of work.

Dustin's brother and family came out one weekend to visit. They all fell in love with her. Emma has been the only girl on that side for a while now; I think she is glad to have another little girl in the family. Emma loved carrying her around like a little doll and Sophie loved the attention. Also, mom went out of town one Friday, so Dustin's mom ("Granny") watched Sophie and they had a great day together with eating at McDonald's and shopping for clothes. Sophie loves clothes, so she had a blast. She did fine staying with "Granny" also. She knows who her family is.

Sophie has also started to go to her own Sunday School class. At first, we brought her in our Sunday School class, so it wouldn't be so overwhelming. But, now she is going to her own class with no problems. I think she loves going to church on Sundays, because she gets to dress up in her dressy dresses, shoes, and bows. She likes to look at herself in the mirror and say "oh, pretty!" The people at church just eat her up. She just waves at everyone and tells them hey or bye.

Sophie has learned what the time out chair is. Lately, she has been testing us. We are trying to correct her behavior early now so it won't become a big problem in the future. She knows what the time out chair is now, she starts crying even before we sit her in it, hahaha. But, she is spending less time there as the weeks continue; she's learning.

Sophie is understanding more and more. She pretty much understands whatever you say, but still can't fully speak the English language. She continues to picks up a few words every now and then. Her favorite word is "NO" and sometimes her favorite word gets her into trouble, especially when I ask her to do something and she tells me no. She pretty much has all the food words down. She is starting to go to her room on her own and play with her toys. She is still not engaging too much in her toys. Whenever she sees someone else playing, she will play. Her activity is following me around the house. She now lets Dustin put her to bed. She hates footed pajamas. And she doesn't like her feet being covered up with a blanket. She always pulls her blanket up off of her feet. Most of the time I can get her to wear socks. She will have to get use to wearing socks in the winter in Mississippi. She is no longer living in a tropical climate. She is getting more affectionate. She will hug, kiss, and rub your face. She has stopped the head butting. She mocks whatever you do. She has a bubbly personality, so I don't know where the information on her profile about her being shy came from. She is still tiny; three years old and wearing 18 months and 24 months clothes. She can't say her Zs. There are other words and letters that she has trouble saying so she may be in speech like her Bubba. On her adoption profile, it did say she had a speech and language delay. Sometimes she just jabbers on and on, we don't know if she is just jabbering or speaking Cantonese.

In a couple of weeks, we will have our Fall Break. We are planning to visit my sister and her family in Clarksville. We will see how Sophie does on her first road trip. Since she can't sit still for very long, the four hour car ride may be interesting.










Friday, August 23, 2013

One month since we have had Sophie!

It has been a month since our Gotcha Day (July 22) with Sophie! We have been home since August 3. We have been going nonstop ever since. I will give you an overview what has happened since we have been home. In my last post, I told you about the trouble of Sophie waking up early ( 2 am) the first night home. Well, it took a couple nights, but she finally started sleeping through the night. Since day one, she has been sleeping in her own room and bed. I think it took Dustin and me a few more days to get on the sleep schedule. Jet lag stinks. I felt sorry for Dustin, because he had to go back to work that Monday after we got back. So, he was really feeling the jet lag.

The day after we got home was a Sunday. Dustin went to church; however, I stayed home with the kids. Sophie did fine her first full day in her new home. It was like she has been here the whole time, but she has to be in the same room that you are. Our family (the grandparents and my sisters) came over for a little visit and brought us lunch. She was fine, skyping really works wonders. They didn’t stay over too long; they didn’t want to overwhelm her. My mom bought her a purse and brought it over that day; and to this day, Sophie has to carry that purse everywhere she goes. She is already calling our family by their names. She is really smart. Later that Sunday evening, Dustin’s football team was having pictures taken; they also take the coaches’ families pictures as well. Dustin wanted Sophie in the picture this time, so we all went to have our pictures taken. She was shy with all the coaches and players (so, I guess skyping with the family was a good thing, because she is fine around them). Sophie wouldn’t let me put her down.

The Monday after we got home, Dustin had to go back to work. So, it was a full day with me and the kids. We had our first grocery trip with Sophie and an extra kid makes a difference, especially one who loves food. The rest of the week I spent a lot of time at my work place since my classroom was moved and I had to get it ready before my students started school, which was Thursday. Yes, it took me two half days to get it ready, because two kids can slow you down. I am not use to a child that is constantly on the go, so I spent a lot of time getting Sophie out of mischief. David Ryan just sat in one of the students’ desks and played on the Kendal. David Ryan has always been good in public places, but Sophie keeps you on your toes. I don’t know if it is a toddler thing or if she is just curious since everything is so new to her. In the future, I will be grading papers and lesson planning when she is sleeping, because it is impossible to get anything like that done when she is awake. Also, that Tuesday night was parent orientation for kindergarteners. Man, kindergarten has changed a lot. David Ryan will be one of the youngest in his class since his birthday is in August. That does worry me a little bit, but his school is one of the best in the county. The following night was Meet the Teacher Night. David Ryan was so excited that he actually skipped to his classroom (this puts some of the worries away for now). He liked his classroom and teachers. We had Sophie “strapped” in a stroller; we wanted this to be David Ryan’s night. We only have been home four days so leaving her with someone is really not a good idea. She was good in the stroller, she even enjoyed being pushed.

School started for the kids on Thursday, August 8th. This was also David Ryan’s first day of kindergarten. I feel very luck to be able to take David Ryan on his first day of kindergarten. Being a teacher myself, you don’t get the luxury of taking your own child to their first day of school. Since David Ryan is in kindergarten, the parents can walk their child to their classroom for the next five days. Then, after that, they will have to be dropped off in the front of the school and walk in by themselves. Again, David Ryan was very excited. Sophie was excited, too, but for different reasons. She just likes being on the “go”. Sophie and I got some one on one time today. She is pretty much on a schedule now. She wakes up at 7:15/7:30, eats lunch at noon, naps from 1:00 to 2:30, snack at 3:45, bath at 8:00, and bedtime at 8:30. I am also picking David Ryan up from school (I am going to enjoy my time off and do the things that I wouldn’t normally be able to do). Seeing his smile every time I pick him up from school makes me want to quit my job and be a stay at home mom (which I would love to do if we could afford to do it). Sophie didn’t like being buckled in her car seat and us sitting idle in the car until it was time for school to get out. The next day I brought her snacks to occupy her. But, after a few weeks, she has gotten this routine down.

We have only had a few days where we have dropped David Ryan off of school and have had zero errands to run. We have spent numerous of days running errands and getting business taken care of. We have sat in government offices that take up pretty much most of the day. We sat in the social security office for a while only for them to tell us that we didn’t have all the paper work for us to get her social security card. We later found out that we are waiting on a document that will take 90 days to get here. I hope she doesn’t need it anytime soon. Also, we sat at the health department for a while to get her vaccines.  She had to get four shots. She did cry a little when they stuck her, but it only lasted about two minutes. She gets over things pretty quick. Earlier that morning when I was dropping DR off at school, I told him about going to take Sophie to get her shots and he said “let’s just put band aids on her and she will be okay.” He didn’t want his little sister getting any shots, hahaha. I have also been to my school taking care of work business. I have been planning a birthday party for both Sophie and DR since their birthdays are a day a part. I have been of the phone with our insurance company trying to get Sophie some health insurance. We want Sophie on the same insurance that DR has, because his plan only costs $98 a month. Our school insurance wants $200 a month to add her. So, when I called DR’s insurance, they told me I would have to wait for open enrollment to add Sophie and couldn’t tell me when that would be. They told me to call back once a week to see if it is open enrollment. So, do we bite the bullet and get the expensive insurance or do we cross our fingers and hope open enrollment opens up before Sophie gets sick or needs to go to the doctor?

Brother and sister are still getting use to each other. We knew David Ryan will have some jealous moments, but Sophie gets them, also. She likes to push David Ryan out of my lap. They both are still learning to share. Sophie doesn’t play much with her toys, but she always wants what brother is playing with even if it is a car or pirate stuff. Sophie won’t play in her room unless someone else is in there with her. She does like to play with DR’s kitchen play set and her teacup set. She likes to play with her phone and keys. She loves playing outside, especially sliding down the slide. Sophie mocks everything you do. David Ryan gets frustrated when she mocks him (sister is already annoying her big brother-hahaha). She wants to wear make up. She watches me in the mornings and points to her face wanting some make up also. It only took about a week since we got home that she started responding to her name Sophie. Now, she even calls herself Sophie instead of Weina. But, her “Sophie” sounds like “Fefe”. Sometimes her “Fefe” sounds like peepee, so we don’t know if she is wanting to go to the bathroom or not. Every so often, she will point to her Pull-Up and say “peepee.” She is still not fully potty trained, but she needs constant reminders. But, we will get there. She is not a picky eater. She loves all her fruits and vegetables. The only thing we have found that she doesn’t like is Frosted Mini Wheat’s. Like I said earlier, she keeps you busy. One day I was wondering why the dish washer was being so quiet and I saw that someone was pushing buttons and had stopped the cycle. She has to have a bow in her hair. She loves dresses that twirl and shoes. We went Target the other day to get some party supplies and she was okay in the toy aisle, but loved the clothes. She really got excited when we were looking at shoes. You would of have thought it was Christmas morning. She had to try on five pairs of shoes! She is a quick learner. She knows what “no” means. When she gets in trouble, she wants a kiss, hahaha, she already knows how to work it. When she gets upset, she doesn’t throw a fit, she cuffs her hand to her mouth and pouts. She has tested us in several areas, but we have taught her that we are not going to allow that behavior. For example, the first couple of days, she would get up from the table and walk around with her food. We had to repeatedly sit her back down in her seat until she got the hint.  She is rough (really rough), she likes to head butt. I am in the process of teaching her to be gentle. Her and DR’s favorite playtime together is chasing each other around the house. They can be affectionate toward sometimes. But, usually it’s the case when one is willing and the other isn’t willing at that moment. David Ryan will try to hug her and she will pull away or Sophie will chase him around the house trying to give him a kiss. There is a lot of arguing. They both need to learn to share. David Ryan has taught Sophie a new word; “mine.” He gets so frustrated because she says to him all the time about her girly stuff and he could care less about her bows and purse- LOL. Sophie also knows how to put the dishes in the sink when she is done eating. She loves when big brother doesn’t finish his supper because she gets to eat his leftovers. She wipes her mouth and table. She also likes to up her daddy’s shoes and put them where they suppose to go (not in the middle of the living room). She does love her daddy; she gets excited when he comes home from work. However, she still prefers me over him. If Dustin puts a bow in her hair after it falls out, she will take it out again for me to put it back in her hair. She cries whenever Dustin puts her to bed, but I have no problems putting her to bed.

Other English words she can say now since she has been home; momma, daddy (she calls him daddy now after hearing DR calling him that, so no papa), mawmaw, pawpaw, granny, Manda, Liz, Sissy (we are still working on Zach, she has trouble with Zs), eat, more, pur (purse), baby, bow, hair, night night, Minnie, money, hey, bye-bye, shoes, pretty, cool, mine, no, one, two, three, cupcake, cookie, cheese, uh oh, boo boo, pee pee, poop, done, gar (garbage), Fe fe (Sophie), Harper, hair, sit, flower, thank you, and Bubba.

Speaking of cupcakes, the other day was Dustin’s birthday and the kids helped make him some S’mores cupcakes. David Ryan was excited that it was his daddy’s birthday;  DR even had us to hide and jump out and say surprise when Dustin got home. He loved helping to make the cupcakes. Sophie wanted to get her hands on the cake mix so bad. She was excited about eating. After she had her first cupcake that night, she has been asking for a cupcake nonstop. I think she is going to be more excited about eating cake on her birthday then opening up presents. This girl loves food!

Yesterday, we had our first post placement visit with our social worker. She was so impressed on how well Sophie is doing. She said she has never seen a case where a child was so “at home” and adjusting so well. Sophie was acting like she has been in our home forever. Our SW was also impressed how well her sleep schedule is doing. She said she has a case where a child has been home 3 months and is still struggling at night. She said we were lucky on how well Sophie is adjusting and how our paperwork moved along so fast. She said Beth from our adoption agency called her back in February (the day we were matched) and told her about our little girl. She said Beth was so ecstatic about “Sophie” that she talked so fast that our social worker couldn’t understand her. Beth said “Sophie” just popped up over night and was an unbelievable case. She is perfectly healthy and really doesn’t need any follow up visits except for the yearly check ups. We are thankful that Sophie’s foster parents did a great job preparing her for this adoption. Our SW said she didn’t see any developmental delays in Sophie like they do sometimes with children in the care of social services. Our social worker said she couldn’t wait until she comes to back in 6 months to see how Sophie is doing since she is doing so well now. The kids did behave during the visit, except Sophie did show her jealous side when David Ryan came near her and us. Since we had a good visit, we went out to our favorite Mexican restaurant and introduced Sophie to some Mexican food and cheese dip. And of course, she loved it. Also, we received some good news about the insurance that I wanted for Sophie. I just happen to call to see if it was open enrollment to add her and it was! Sophie now has health insurance and it isn’t going to cost us an arm and a leg.

I go back to work in a couple of weeks, she will be staying at my mom’s. I did leave her at mom’s once for a couple of hours to see how she would do while I ran errands. She was fine, so I think “she” will be okay when I go back to work, but the question is will I be okay. I do love being at home with my children and taking David Ryan to school. I wish I could be a stay at home mom, but in today’s time, it is hard to do that. But, I guess being a teacher is the next best thing to being a stay at home mom. If I had the opportunity to stay at home, would I? Yes, in a heart beat. My mom stayed at home with me and my sisters, and I loved having my mom there. Kids grow up too fast and I don’t want to miss anything!

I am going to try to do monthly blog updates on Sophie. Going back to work is going to be a challenge with a toddler that can’t sit still, so hopefully I will be able to fit some blogging in there. I apologize for any grammar mistakes, but typing with a two year sitting beside you grabbing at the mouse is a challenge, also.

David Ryan's way of introducing Sophie to people "This is Sophie, she's from China, she talks Chinese."

Enjoy the pictures!

                                     Sophie on Gotcha Day- July 22, 2013           

                                     Sophie Now, Gotcha Day One Month Anniversary

                                                               Sophie's pout face

                                                      Happy Face!

                                                 Doing her Favorite Thing

     After a long wait, we are finally a family of four!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Saturday, Aug.3--- Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

Well, it took a train ride to Hong Kong, a plane to Chicago then to Memphis, and our Dodge Journey to finally get HOME! But, we made it!!!!

Let's go back some hours....

Again, Dustin and I woke up before Sophie, so we got in our showers. Dustin left me getting ready in the hotel room to go see where we need to go in the airport. We woke Sophie up and got her dressed. We ate granola and breakfast bars in the room. I put Sophie on some what was suppose to be skinny jeans but she is so little that even a size 24 months made her skinny jeans look baggy. While we were packing up, Dustin was watching TV. He was watching the world news and they were talking how Americans need to watch out for terror attacks, especially world travelers. They also said the USA was closing down some of their embassies. Great! Just what I need to hear right before we step on a 15 hour plane ride. Our flight leaves at 11:40, so we checked out of our room at 9 am. It was no problem finding our terminal since Dustin found it earlier. The Hong Kong airport is huge and really nice. The security check wasn't that bad, it went rather quickly. We all went to the bathroom before getting on the plane. Then, I guess I looked "interesting" because a local surveyor selected me out of everyone to participate in a survey about staying Hong Kong. She didn't get a lot of interesting things out of me since we just stayed one night, not even 12 hours. But, this did help pass the time.

They started boarding about 11 am. Dustin had to purchase to cokes (never been opened) to take on the flight. But, before you board on the plane, there was another security check going through your carry on luggage. They wouldn't allow Dustin to bring the cokes, money wasted. They even had Sophie to dump her water that was in her sippy cup. No exit aisle seats this time. We had less foot and leg room this time, but at least we were all three sitting together. Before the flight even took off, Sophie was asleep. This could be a good sign. However, she woke up about 30 minutes later when they started serving snacks. She liked her pretzels, I thought she would go back to sleep, but she didn't (until much later). She liked the in-flight meals. Food always helps keep her busy. She also watched some cartoons and colored in her coloring book. Dustin did take her to walk around the airplane some when she got antsy. She didn't really like wearing the seat belt, which she cried a little over. She probably cried about 3 times the whole time we were on the plane, but she didn't cry for long. She had no problem using the potty on the plane. She did better than I expected. About hour 6, I was ready to get off the plane! Sophie slept the last 5 hours of the flight. We had to make her be still to get her to settle down and fall asleep, this was one of the times she cried. But, she did fall asleep. So, she was asleep at take off and when we landed. I slept about 4 hours. I slept when she slept. Dustin didn't sleep at all, I told him he was probably going to regret it later. He watched a lot of movies though. I only watched two movies this time. Oblivion was my favorite!

We landed in Chicago at 1:40 pm and we had about two hours to go through immigration, customs, and security check before our flight left for Memphis. It was going to be cutting it close. Oh yeah, we had to recheck our luggage also. We hustled off the plane and basically ran to customs. That went pretty quick. Then, we had to go through immigration. They looked at our passports and told us after we pick up our check in luggage that we will have to give the officer at the end of lane two our brown envelope. It took a while to claim our luggage; tick,tick,tick. (Are we going to make it?) As soon as we picked up our luggage, we got in the line to see the "officer." Then, he directed us to another waiting area while we were to give our brown envelope. They took our envelope and told us to have a seat. I hope this doesn't take that long. It took about 10 minutes before they told us we could go. Then, we were off to the security check and our terminal. Well, the Chicago airport is very confusing. We had the most trouble here in Chicago getting to our terminal than the foreign airports.We had to take a tram to get to the domestic side of the airport. Then, we had to recheck in at the front to get our boarding passes. We had problems printing Sophie's ticket. (Cutting it very close, I really don't want to miss our flight!) Then, we had to go through security check. The line was literally a mile long and it wasn't moving. A couple asked us and some people in front of us if they go ahead and jump ahead of us since their plane was boarding. This gave Dustin an idea. He said follow me! We went from the end of the line to the front, Dustin explaining to the people up front why. They were nice about it. The security guard asked Dustin what we were doing and he told her. She asked if we asked everyone that we skipped if it was okay (No, just the few people up front, but lady we have a plane to catch and your security check process is so slow). It was really slow, it moving like every 5 minutes and was backed up! We went through security check then one of our suitcases was flagged. They took one of carry ons and took every single thing out and ran it back through the machine. Then, they had "us!" to repack everything. This took 15 minutes itself! We were not very happy. We basically ran to our terminal! We made it in enough of time! Yay! I am going to be home less than two hours. We weren't waiting very long before they started boarding the plane for Memphis. They actually boarded 10 minutes late. This flight was going to be only one hour and 17 minutes long. This is nothing after a 15 hour flight. Dustin's seat was two seats behind mine and Sophie's. Sophie was asleep again before take off and slept the whole time. Dustin was asleep, too. I was to anxious to get home to fall asleep. It was great sensation flying over Memphis! I have to admit I shed a few tears when we reached Memphis. After we got off the plane, I through Sophie an "American" dress on for some photo ops.

The Memphis airport was a ghost town compared to all of the other airports we had been to on this trip. However, it was a great feeling!!! Walking out of the terminal, we saw some familiar faces peeking around the corner. I lost it when I saw my "baby boy" standing there! Holding Sophie in my arms, I walked directly toward David Ryan and bent down and introduced him to his sister. Then, I got me a hug! There was a lot of tears, kisses, and hugs! Sophie did really well seeing everyone there. She let our families take pictures of her. She didn't cry when David Ryan hugged her. I was too emotional to remember all what was said at the airport.

She did well in her car seat. I thought she would scream being buckled in a car seat, because in China they don't have car seats for children. But, she did fine. We stopped by Wendy's on the way home and got us some good ole American hamburgers to take home and eat. We got chicken nuggets and french fries for the kiddos. We had our first family dinner in our home at our table as a family of four. We let the kids try to get to know each other a little before we put them to bed. However, we did go to bed pretty early since Dustin hasn't slept in over 15 hours. We let David Ryan watch a movie in bed since it was kind of early. But, he is good, he will stay in bed and watch the move and fall asleep afterwards. He won't get out of bed until we come and get him in the morning. He has always been good about that. Sophie whimpered a little bit when we laid her in her crib, but she eventually fell asleep. We have a baby monitor in our home so we can hear Sophie in her room.

Sophie woke up about 2 am and Dustin was sound asleep, so momma to the rescue. I calmed her down and made me a little mat on the floor beside the crib until she fell asleep, which was 5:30 am. I didn't want her waking David Ryan up. I went back to my bed after she fell asleep and I couldn't go back to bed until 7:00 am. Dustin was up, too. He couldn't go back to bed either, but we both went back to sleep at 7am and woke up again at 8:00 am. The kids were ready to get up for the day. Hopefully, after a few days, Sophie will get on Mississippi time. I will try to update soon on her days after we been home a few days. I know you all want to know how Sophie is adjusting to her new life here in the good ole USA! ( I am currently working on the post for this update, a lot has been going on since we have been so it is taking me a while).

Oh yeah, I have to share this with you. While on this trip, we have dodged a bombing in the Beijing airport, earthquakes in Central China, a chicken pox outbreak, and a terrorist attack scare! "God Bless America" has a new meaning to us! We are so happy to be home!

                                        Sophie in her "Daddy's Princess" shirt and skinny jeans

                              Already getting sleepy before take off (before our 15 hour flight)

                                    In the airport; our first photo as a family of four

                                       In the Memphis airport meeting family

                                         Our first family dinner together as a family of four